Yesterday’s flippant post about Indian left handers actually brought up a somewhat serious point made by Peter Roebuck (thanx to stumps for the link) that there’s a reason many of the top batsmen bat the wrong way around. The theory goes that the dominant hand ought to take the important position. Eg – if you’re right handed, the right hand should be at the top of the handle (eg – batting left handed). To prove his point, he cites many of the world’s leading batsmen:
“Mark Taylor? Turns on his airconditioner with the right paw. Sourav Ganguly? Kicks penalties with his right foot. Marcus Trescothick opens chocolate bars with his right hand. Matthew Hayden tosses salad with the same palm. In the ring, Justin Langer leads with his left but dispatches with his right. Michael Hussey does one-handed push-ups with his bowling arm. Michael Clarke is a lefty and wisely puts that hand at the top of his bat.
Oh, and just to complete the argument, think about the contemporary greats, Adam Gilchrist, Brian Lara and Sachin Tendulkar. Have you ever seen the Australian throw? The West Indian hit a golf ball? Or the Indian play table tennis? The prosecution rests.”
Ah, but what about Don Bradman and Ricky Ponting. Right handers who batted right handed – and not too shabby with the blade. Well, Roebuck has an answer to that too:
“Admittedly a few players have somehow managed to score a few runs despite standing the wrong way around. Don Bradman springs to mind. At first sight his performance in averaging 99 in Test cricket weakens the case that he should have been batting left-handed.
Bill Andrews, the old Somerset coach, had the answer for such craven arguments. Decades ago he was chastising a boy for gripping the bat the wrong way only to be told that ‘Bradman held the bat this way and he scored a few’. Undaunted, Bill promptly replied: ‘Yes, but imagine how many he’d have scored if he’d held the bat the right way!’ ”
Again, hard to refute that kind of logic 🙂