When the Gentlemen’s Game saw some most celebrated cricketers with the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, Brian Lara, Shane Warne, Mutiah Muralitharan, Rahul Dravid and Jacques Kallis, there are few cricketers who didn’t get the credits they deserved to and are termed as underrated. Here is a list of underrated cricketers to have played the game.
Nicknamed “Afghan” because he was overshadowed by his brother Steve Waugh and became the “Forgotten Waugh”, Mark Edward Waugh is one of the most elegant and gifted stroke maker to have ever played the game. He had the ability to drive, pull, flicks, cut and loft the ball with ease which most of the batsmen failed to have. Apart from his batting, Waugh is a decent off-spinner and a terrific slip fielder who held the record for taking more number of catches as a fielder in test matches till India’s Rahul Dravid broke it. Having scored over 8000 runs in both tests and ODI’s, Waugh is one of the most underrated batsmen in the Aussie line-up that had the likes of Matthew Hayden, Steve Waugh, Ricky Ponting, Adam Gilchrist etc.
Averaging over 50 in over 90 test matches is an outstanding achievement for any batsman. Even after scoring tons of runs in International cricket, Younis Khan didn’t get what he deserved. He was dropped from the side for no reason. Even then he remained as the mainstay of Pakistan’s batting line up. Apart from his batting skills, Younis is also an exceptional slip fielder and a safe out-fielder. He led Pakistanis to victory in the 2009 World T20 and had an outstanding tenure as captain.
Andy Flower, the elder of the Flower brothers in the greatest ever batsman to come out of Zimbabwe. He had scored over 4700 runs in his test career that spanned for 63 matches and had an average of 51.54. In the ODI’s too, he fared decently as he scored 6786 in 213 matches with an average of 35.34. His reverse-sweeps are a treat to watch and apart from his batting, he is also a brilliant wicket-keeper as well. After finishing his playing career, he was appointed as the coach of England Cricket Team. Playing for Zimbabwe, he often was denied the credits he deserved.
Former New Zealand skipper Stephan Fleming is the greatest ever player to have led the Blackcaps in International cricket. Fleming is well known for his skills as a captain than as a batsman. Fleming was made the captain for the New Zealand side when he was just 23 years old and he repaid the faith the board had in him. In few years, he became one of the most successful captains of New Zealand. He reads the game well and has a good tactic as a skipper. He is one of the most underrated captains the world has ever seen.
Speaking of underrated cricketers, one cannot find a better name than Shivnarine Chanderpaul. Chanderpaul, who has been the mainstay of West Indies’ batting line-up for almost two decades still has some fuel left in his tank and is playing in the same way as he did in his early 20’s. He didn’t get what he deserved from the fans. Technically he is a better batsman than Brian Lara. The bowler should have a special skill to get Chanderpaul out. He has played over 150 Tests and has scored over 11,000 runs in his career.