Former India batsman VVS Laxman on Thursday (November 22) disclosed that Harbhajan Singh and Zaheer Khan are the best sledgers he came across during his 16-year long international career.
Speaking during the launch of his autobiography ’281 and Beyond’, Laxman shared his thoughts on sledging, saying that it shouldn’t be about making personal attacks but rather it should only be focused on distraction.
“The term sledging is about how you distract the batsman, or the bowler too. And there are various ways to do that. It doesn’t mean you abuse someone or you start talking about personal issues,” Laxman quoted as saying by Times of India.
“I felt the best sledgers I’ve come across were Harbhajan Singh and Zaheer Khan. Zaheer was so smart, he would talk about the things which may irritate the batsmen. Something as simple as ‘you are struggling now. I know that I’ve got you.’ It’s just about creating that iota of doubt in the batsman’s mind,” he continued.
The current Indian side is known for playing aggressive cricket under Virat Kohli. The aggressive attitude and body language has often grabbed the headlines and he has time and again said that his team believes in giving it back.
“Aggression has to be very natural,” Laxman said. “Some players show off their aggression, some are internally aggressive. If you are trying to be someone who you are not, then you will struggle. Ultimately when you are playing at the highest level, you have to be mentally tough and mentally tough or having killer instinct doesn’t mean you show off your emotions. It’s about doing well in tough conditions. Whoever does that, will be mentally tough.”
Laxman also revealed he had decided in advance that he would end his international career after India’s tour of Australia in 2011-12.
“That 2011 series, I wanted to retire after beating Australia in Australia. I had decided that in 2009-10 itself. I felt we had a lot of experience, we had the firepower in our bowling. Australia also had a good, experienced side but we definitely didn’t play up to our potential and didn’t fulfil our own expectations,” Laxman recalled.