The Fantastic Four

Marvel’s famous series ‘The Fantastic Four’ had four superhumans precisely, Mister Fantastic who could stretch the body, basically the leader of the pack, The Invisible Woman who could render herself invisible, Human Torch, who could generate flames and The Monstrous Thing who possessed stone-like skin. When this term is linked with Cricket, you have these top-4 who actually have real life superpowers.

  1.  Virat Kohli, who stretches himself from Top to Toe to improve his game and prove his worth breaking numerous records with every match he plays.
  2. Kane Williamson, the New Zealand skipper, who is silently matching the league with his consistent performances and scoring in a proper cricketing manner.
  3. Steve Smith, the Australian skipper, just as a flame that occurs out of nowhere, has lightened up the game with his elegant touch play and momentarily quick play.
  4. Joe Root, an English root who is very difficult to uproot once he gets going. Very similar to The Thing.

These 4 cricketers have a lot in common, right from replacing legends of their teams to batting Right-Handed, from batting at No.3 or No.4 to falling in the age group of 25-28. From being the best fielders of their sides to being the backbone of their respective teams.

VIRAT KOHLI- He is the oldest wolf who leads the pack. Consistency, Dedication, Diligence, etc. you name all the positive superlatives and this man proves everything beyond that. He is the one who has broken records every now and then. To consider him the leader of this pack is not so obscure as the Indian team had just witnessed the retirement of the Master Blaster, when an inexperienced but consistent Kohli stepped up and filled in Sachin’s big cricket shoes. The two are incomparable. Virat Kohli is a gifted cricketer with his razor-sharp fielding as well as undeviating fettle of batting. He has also been bestowed with the prestigious Padma Shri award and was also adjudged the ICC Player of the year in 2012.

KANE WILLIAMSON- The New Zealand skipper makes me realize that there can be Rahul Dravids in different countries as well. While playing under different captains such as Brendon McCullum, Daniel Vettori and Ross Taylor, Kane has always been under the shadow of these great cricketers. He has quietly made his mark very quickly by becoming only the 13th cricketer to have scored a century against all the other test playing nations. He followed Sachin Tendulkar during his childhood days. No wonder he has learnt the art of being humble and staying away from controversies. He is truly spectacular with his fielding and even has two 4-wicket hauls in ODIs as a part-time off spinner. He was the Wisden Cricketer of the Year 2016.

STEVE SMITH- This Australian skipper is often considered to be the most arrogant of the lot. Usually because of his sledging or word-war pre and post match against the opposition. But whom are we kidding, every other Australian player has this in his blood, right from the great Steve Waugh to Ricky Ponting. But, this trait seems puny when compared to their cricketing abilities. They simply are the best. Steve Smith, the 28 year old captain, was selected in the team as a Leg-spin bowling all-rounder. To everyone’s surprise this lad made it big with the bat. He was named ICC Cricketer of the year 2014-15 season. His lightning-quick fielding as well as his habit of providing break-throughs to the team at a crucial stage have become his USP.

JOE ROOT- This English lad has his roots very deep when it comes to cricket. He has upheld the English batting order with his hunger of performing at big stages. He has successfully filled the place of former English skipper Paul Collingwood, not just as a batsman but also as a flying fielder. Being awarded as the Wisden Cricketer of the year in 2014, Root has achieved a lot in such a young age.

Looking at The Fantastic Four, cricket is proudly in great hands and the game is going over to another level every time they play somewhere. Indeed, these four have proved to be the best but yet cricket is a funny game. No one knows when it bites and one faces a form-slump. I personally want these four to play with the same consistency and vigour in the years to come. These four are benchmarks for one another and each of the four is competitive enough to scale heights that have never been scaled before. Although as of today, I will put my money on Virat Kohli as he is at a completely different level and is making it very difficult for his contemporaries to catch up with him.

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Kirtan Desai

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