The art of blocking. This form was valiantly showcased by the South African batsman Hashim Amla during the second innings of the 4th Test when he scored just 25 runs by facing the Indian bowlers continuously for 244 balls.
The first run of his bat came after facing his 46th ball, that too was intentioned to defend but an inside edge that went past his stumps helped him keep his feet in motion by running 2 runs. The ultra-defensive approach was taken up by the Proteas captain to try and ensure India doesn’t get quick wickets and hence a 3-0 win over the visitors.
This block display of batting reminded us of a similar innings where our very own Test legend Rahul Dravid or popularly known as ‘The Wall’ was getting too difficult to knock down by the Australians in the India Australia series 2008.
Like Amla, Dravid was also playing in foreign conditions. ‘The Wall’ playing the first of the 4-match Test series against Australia in 2007-08, at Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), took 41 balls to get off the mark in the first innings.
He received a huge round of applause from the Australian crowd at the stadium.
We seldomly see these instances in cricket, usually when a player scores a century and plays a remarkable innings the audience applauds the player but comically here, the audiences appreciated his first running run, when Rahul Dravid scored the first run after facing 41 balls. In return Dravid raised his bat.
Watch the video of Rahul Dravid’s innings here –