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Friday, July 03, 2020

‘Outstanding catcher’: Remembering Rahul Dravid’s brilliance as a fielder

Rahul Dravid holds the record for the most number of catches (210) taken by a non-wicketkeeper. In the 509 matches he played for India, he took a total of 406 catches.

By: Sports Desk | Updated: June 30, 2020 7:55:13 pm
Rahul Dravid was renowned as an excellent slip-fielder. (Source: Reuters)

Aside from his technique, determination, and more than 25,000 runs in international cricket, Rahul Dravid was also renowned as a brilliant fielder on the pitch. Remembering that, Harbhajan Singh shared a montage video of some of Dravid’s best catches in his career on Tuesday.

Dravid played 509 matches for India and took a total of 406 catches while mostly standing in the slip cordon. In Test cricket, he holds the record for the most number of catches (210) taken by a non-wicketkeeper.

Dravid’s record still stands eight years into his retirement and is followed by Mahela Jayawardene (205), Jacques Kallis (200), Ricky Ponting (196), and Mark Waugh (181) in the list of most catches in Test cricket.

Harbhajan Singh paid tribute to the former India captain, and captioned the video, “Outstanding catcher Rahul Dravid.” Later, VVS Laxman, Anil Kumble, and Ravichandran Ashwin retweeted the video from their Twitter handles lauding the cricketing great’s agile reflexes.

In an interview ESPNcricinfo in 2010, Dravid mentioned how practice is vital to the art of catching.

“You should enjoy it (being a slip fielder). You should want to be there. It is a position where you’ve got to concentrate the whole day, where you are always in the game,” Dravid had said.

“Then you’ve got to take a lot of catches. There is no substitute to taking a lot of catches as a youngster if you want to do slip catching – you’ve got to catch, catch, catch.”

“One of the important things I have found with slip catching is, you need to have relaxed hands. When an edge is coming towards you, the last thing you want to do is tighten up or freeze or snatch at the ball.”

Dravid also kept wickets for India for a period of time before the debut of MS Dhoni. He played as a wicketkeeper for 73 ODIs between 1999 to 2004, affecting 84 dismissals, including 71 catches and 13 stumpings.

Dravid played 164 Tests and 344 ODIs in his international career, amassing 13,288 and 10,889 runs in the two formats respectively.

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