Rahul Dravid had the “best seat” in the house when VVS Laxman scored his epic 281 against Australia at the Eden Gardens, an innings that the former captain termed as the “greatest innings by an Indian“. let’s discuss How Laxman’s 281 at Eden Garden Changed Cricket
Imagine the courage to be able to flick a ball in the middle and off-stump on a turning track in Kolkata, across the line against a great bowler like Shane Warne or driving Glenn McGrath and Jason Gillespie. Laxman was flawless that day.
How Laxman’s 281 at Eden Garden Changed Cricket
The sublime intensity of that match ended up creating one of the most uplifting cricketing stories in decades. India having been bowled out for 171 in its first innings, India was sent back in to bat early on day three with the tourist holding a 274-run lead.
The decision appeared to be indicated when India was four down for 232 in its second innings, needing an V. V. S. Laxman other 42 runs to avoid an innings defeat. It was then that Rahul Dravid and V. V. S. Laxman produced an extraordinary partnership of 376.
But even as Dravid and Laxman’s counterattack began wresting the initiative from a rampant opposition, Gillespie said Australia believed it was still very much in the contest. “We certainly felt the chance of winning was slipping away. However, we still believed that saving the game was very possible. Whilst we were confident of being ahead of the game, I don’t believe complacency was an issue.”
“The talk was basically that they were playing well, however, it only takes one ball or one poor shot and we can get a wicket. Unfortunately, the poor shot didn’t eventuate! I did try to distract VVS by flapping my arms like a bird as I was running in to bowl to put him off! It was one of the best innings in Test history. A superb knock,” Gillespie told Sportstar.
Laxman was a phenomenal player, says Steve Waugh
Waugh also said that Laxman was a phenomenal player and liked the big occasions. “Against us, he was a phenomenal player, his record against the lesser teams wasn’t as much, so that showed that he liked the big occasions,” Waugh said. “He had a great eye (for the ball) and I can’t remember him having too many weak and he was a player in one of the greatest batting line-ups of India,” Waugh added. India went on to score 657 runs with the help of VVS Laxman and Rahul Dravid scoring 281 runs and 180 runs respectively. India managed to win that match by 171 runs.