He may not have the fire-power of Virender Sehwag or the class of Rahul Dravid. He may not be as balanced as Sachin Tendulkar or as wristy as VVS Laxman, but Gautam Gambhir has become the new Mr. Dependable of the Indian team. Be it in Test Matches, One Day Internationals or the slam bang T20, Gautam Gambhir has become a run machine. He is scaring his opposition and soon becoming the most prized wicket in the India batting line-up.
When he scored 116 at the Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium, Chittagong he became only the fourth cricketer in the history of the game to score fve consecutive hundreds after Sir Don Bradman, Sir Everton DeCourcy Weekes, South African Jacques Kallis and Pakistan's Mohammad Yousuf. In doing so he surpassed the Indian record of four consecutive Test hundreds jointly held by him and 'The Wall' Rahul Dravid.
This feat is so exclusive that many legends of the game such as Garry Sobers, Gordon Greenidge, Allan Border, Sunil Gavaskar, Colin Cowdrey, David Gower and Hannif Mohammad do not feature in the list. The fact that four of his five tons have come in the second innings when it becomes difficult to score explains the class of the man. The southpaw has achieved this feat after hitting purple patch in New Zealand last year.
Gambhir's four earlier Test tons were in Napier (137 against New Zealand in March 2009), in Wellington (167 against New Zealand in April 2009), in Ahmedabad (114 against Sri Lanka on November 16, 2009) and in Kanpur (167 against Sri Lanka on November 24, 2009). He has also become the first Indian batsman to score 10 consecutive 50s in his last 10 Test matches. India have won in all the occasions apart from Ahmedabad which was a draw.
Gambhir how will be looking to equal Bradman's record in the second Test against Bangladesh, starting on January 24 in Dhaka. The legendary Australian had scored six hundreds in six Tests came between January 1937 to July 1938, all against England spread over two series with three tons coming in Australia while the other three in England. Gambhir equalling the feat set by Don more than 70 years ago will be a huge feather in his cap.