Difficult is the task to step in to the shoes of an outstanding performer and replacing him. The level of expectations only goes on top and comparison begins on all the takes.
Same is the situation at which Bradd Haddin has arrived at. The wicket keepers job is cumbersome. No respite whatsoever and concentrating on every single delivery is the biggest challenge. Unlike the bowlers, there is no change of wicket keepers at the end of the over. Cheering the team is one of the major jobs for the keeper. If there is no fall of the wicket, the wicket keeper has to work a wicket out by way of chirping behind the wicket and distracting the batsman. Loads of words are exchanged between the batsmen.
Ian Healy has done some outstanding work behind the wicket. He was replaced by Adam Gilchrist, who added new dimensions to the keeper’s job. Explosive batting was his style. He was the perfect replacement of for him. Gilchrist went on to change the definition of the wicket keeper and added a new dimension as an explosive batsman.
Gilchrist took the job of the keeper absolutely with the expectations and his retirement has created a void in the Australian camp and the expectation from Bradd Haddin has gone to infinity. Haddin the current Australian keeper has been in the waiting wings for a long time now. It was in 2001 series, he was touring India as the backup keeper for Adam Gilchrist. Other than injury, Gilchrist is too good a keeper batsman to replace. The entire 2001 was a tour for Bradd Haddin. Finally Bradd made the test debut as a keeper against West Indies this year.
Australia has produced some wonderful and world class keepers. Instantly recollected are Rod Marsh, Ian Healy and Adam Gilchrist.
It’s heard that Haddin is taking some valuable tips from the legend Ian Healy on keeping on Indian wickets. Can he handle the spin on Indian turf and can he step in the shoes of Gilly is the biggest point of concern for Australian camp. Even if he takes the tips from God, it won’t help him to gauge the bounce on Indian turf!!
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