Virender Sehwag has recalled the time he got into a battle of words and wits with Inzamam-ul-Haq, challenging the then-Pakistan skipper to bring in a fielder from the deep so that he could hit a six.
Sehwag’s blistering strokeplay made him one of the game’s modern greats, while he earned considerable popularity for his freewheeling personality.
Recalling an incident from the 2005 India-Pakistan Test series during an episode of Breakfast with Champions, Sehwag narrated how he decided to take on leg-spinner Danish Kaneria after convincing Inzamam to change his field.
“Kaneria was bowling round the wicket on the pads,” Sehwag recalled. “They were trying to stop my runs. It had been a while – a couple of overs on the pads. I said: ‘Inzi bhai, it’s been too long, my legs are hurting now. How long do I keep stretching out and padding the ball?'”
What followed was a humorous exchange between Sehwag and Inzamam.
“I told him: ‘Bring long on up’.”
“Inzi asked ‘What will you do?'”
“I said: ‘I’ll hit a six’.”
“Inzi said: ‘You’re just joking. You won’t hit’.”
“I said: ‘If I actually hit, you can push him back again’.”
Inzamam ended up bringing a fielder in, with Sehwag promptly attacking the very same area of the field. Kaneria though wasn’t impressed but was amusingly shut down by his captain.
“He [Inzi] obliged and brought the fielder in. Kaneria bowled a googly – he didn’t know. I smashed him over long-on. Kaneria was angry, he furiously asked Inzamam: ‘What’s suddenly happened to him?’
“He [Inzi] said: ‘Step aside and be quiet. You don’t know what’s happening here. Keep bowling or I’ll send you out!'”
Sehwag had a fine Test record overall, but fared the best against Pakistan: he averaged 91.14 against the team with four 100+ scores and a strike rate of 80.20.