The ugly side of the decade gone by

by Ashish

Cricinfo is going decadal with a vengeance, and here’s my two penn’orth – thoda twist and all.

Ugliest Batsman: Nobody beats Chanderpaul. Not by a long way. Very fine batsman, and batted unbelievably well in the last three seasons, but there’s nobody quite like him to set the teeth on edge. Bar none. Well, you do end up wondering if Graeme Smith must spread his legs quite like that, and you’d end up grimacing every time Ganguly pulled like only Ganguly could – but still, for all round oh-my-godness, Chanderpaul has it nailed.

Ugliest Bowler: Sohail Tanveer – it’s jarring, every time you try and understand how he does it. Paul Adams deserves a mention, but personally, we’ll go with him in the hilarious list. We do not care how effective Mendis is, that grip is not aesthetic. But overall, it’s got to be Sohail.

Ugliest Fielder: Anil Kumble. Don’t get me wrong – not for want of effort, surely not. But Kumble’s flops-on-the-ground, legs bent awkwardly – he looked for all the world like a giraffe trying his darnedest to stand up. Inzamam might be a little miffed at missing out – and indeed, on those rare occasions when he deigned to chase one to the boundary, the huff and puff back to his position was alone worth it , but Kumble pips him. Just about.

Ugliest Coach: Heh.