In a contest that was conducted by Wisden India to pick up the best Indian batsman in Test Cricket, Rahul Dravid has aced the list, brushing aside the monumental challenges from Sachin Tendulkar, Virat Kohli, and Sunil Gavaskar.
Over the ages, Indian cricket has been blessed with fine cricketers who were illustrious in their own forms, conjuring first-hand magic either with the bat or the ball. Wisden India wanted to classify the best of the lot by convening a vote which was supposed to showcase the Indian most popular amongst the fans.
Locked in a cut and run battle in the finale, Dravid and Tendulkar duked out a high-octane stoush, where the Wall of India pipped the Master Blaster by a very close margin.
The total number of people who participated in this poll was 11,400 where the figure does seem modest against the whopping cricket-supporting nation of India. However, in the limited heads who decided the call, 52 percent voted for Rahul Dravid while 48 percent voted for Tendulkar.
Sachin Tendulkar is arguably the best Indian batsman to have graced any format of the game, however, when it came to Test cricket, Rahul Dravid has exhibited nerves of steel and stellar resilience in the face of gigantic adversities to glide India past their counterparts in crucial encounters.
Sunil Gavaskar and Virat Kohli were also part of this poll in the earlier stages and had to bow out of the contest as Dravid thumped Gavaskar while Tendulkar thumped Kohli in the semi-finals en route to the final contention of glory.
A third-place play-off was also conducted between Kohli and Gavaskar where the latter aced over the current Indian skipper, courtesy of his 10,122 runs in the longest format of the game.
Despite the fact that voters chose Dravid to be at the top of the list, going by their numbers the positions would have been completely different.
Tendulkar has amassed the highest number of runs in Test cricket, flexing 15,921 while Rahul Dravid is the next in the list, bragging about 13,288 runs at an astonishing average of 52.31. Gavaskar was the first Indian batsman to cross the hallowed-mark of 10000 ODI runs while Kohli is relatively much younger than the other there in the longest format of the game.
At the rate of success that has been savored by Kohli until now, there is a downright probability that if he can carry on with this rate of proliferation in the longest version of the game, he may soon rattle all records which have been painstakingly chronicled by the Master Blaster and Rahul Dravid over the years.
With all said and done, there is another notable mention which we must also keep in our thoughts and he is none other than Cheteshwar Pujara. Known for his resilient batting and exquisite stroke-play, Pujara can shortly find himself in the path to such titanic glories.