Fielding has become a very important aspect of the modern game and many teams now have dedicated fielding coaches to ensure that runs are not given away easily. Also, good fielders can pick out catches out of thin air and change the course of a game.
Here is a rating of the International fielding units:
India has one of the best fielding units in World cricket and a lot of that credit needs to go to MS Dhoni, who wanted players to contribute on the field. Now, the Indian team has fantastic fielders who can boss any game.
Virat Kohli, Rahane, Raina, Jadeja, Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul are all fantastic fielders who have proven themselves at the highest level.
South Africa (9/10):
Always one of the best fielding sides in the world, South Africa are still at the top when it comes to plucking blinders. Led by the incredibly agile Faf du Plessis, the Proteas also have superman AB De Villiers and the fantastic JP Duminy on the field.
Also, the likes of Amla and Behardien are good athletes on the field and have made a big difference to the squad.
The Australian team are no slouches on the pitch and have some fantastic athletes who have no qualms about throwing their bodies around. Maxwell, Warner and Smith are brilliant fielders who can effect run-outs from almost anywhere.
They may not be in the same bracket as Ricky Ponting or Andrew Symonds, but they still pull off the blinders when needed.
New Zealand (8/10):
New Zealand is another team who have a good fielding unit though it may not be as great as it once was. Martin Guptill, Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor are great fielders and have made a difference when called upon.
Brendon McCullum was another one who could make a big difference but with his retirement, they have not been able to find someone as good.
The Englishmen are another set of fielders who are consistent but not the best at what they do. Joe Root, Alex Hales and Jason Roy are decent fielders on their day. However, their strength lies in the other departments.
England do have a great fielder in Eoin Morgan who is one of the best in the world but that’s about it with regards to that department.
Sri Lanka (6.5/10):
The Sri Lankan team were not really known for their great fielding and this was very prominent in the Champions Trophy, where they dropped two crucial catches in the game against Pakistan, thus handing them the game.
Sri Lankan cricket in general is in a bad place and will need some sort of inspiration from somewhere if they are to improve.
Pakistan team have historically been known to be bad fielders though they have improved considerably in that regard. However, they still have a lot of work to do if they are to get to the top.
Ahmed Shehzad and Fakhar Zaman are good fielders but Babar Azam and the likes of Mohammad Hafeez will need to up their game if they are to be considered world class.
The Bangladeshi team is actually on the rise now, having put in some inspired performances over the past few years. However, they still haven’t reached the top with regards to fielding and it will take them some more time.
Bangladesh cricket is still getting better and it won’t be long before they get to the top as a real cricketing nation.
By Rohit Nair