Adam Gilchrist

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World T20, 2nd Semi-Final

India vs West Indies

at Mumbai, Mar 31, 2016
West Indies 196/3 beat India 192/2 by 7 wickets

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Adam Gilchrist

Adam Gilchrist is an outstanding, aggressive left-handed batsman and effective wicketkeeper, combining the two roles for the Australian national team. At Old Trafford in August 2005 he passed Alec Stewart's world record of 4,540 runs as a Test wicketkeeper. He is considered to be one of the best wicketkeeper-batsmen in the modern history of the game. Gilchrist's ability to destroy the opposition in a very short period of time led him to be known as 'The Demolition Man'. However, Gilchrist has sometimes come in for criticism for taking too many chances early in an innings. He and Andy Flower are generally regarded as the finest batsmen who were also their team's regular wicketkeepers, ever to play international cricket. Ranking one or the other as superior is highly subjective, as they played different roles in very different teams.
Gilchrist quickly established himself as the Australian one-day side's wicketkeeper, ousting Ian Healy in the process. When Healy retired for the 1999-2000 season, Gilchrist made his Test debut against Pakistan. In just his second Test match he made 149 not out to help guide Australia to victory in a game that looked lost, and an unbeaten 204 against South Africa helped Australia to another win. His aggressive batting and ability as wicketkeeper has meant that Gilchrist has become a vital member of the Australian side, his importance underlined by the fact he has captained Australia in both forms of the game. Gilchrist was captain of the Australian side (in place of the injured Ricky Ponting) that won the series 2-1 on their 2004 tour of India, the first Australian side to do this since 1969. His Test average of over 50 puts him in an elite group of batsmen who average over a half-century. He is currently 25th on the all-time list of highest batting averages. At one point in March 2002, his average was over 60, and was the second-highest in Test history Gilchrist has a full complement of attacking shots; he is equally powerful on the back or front foot, making him extremely difficult to bowl to. Perhaps his main weakness for bowlers to exploit is his very propensity for attacking play. He briefly held the record for the fastest double century in Tests, requiring 212 balls for the feat in a Test against South Africa in Johannesburg in January 2002 (the record was then broken in an amazing innings by Nathan Astle in March of that year).
Gilchrist's attacking batting has been a key part of Australia's one-day success, as he usually opens the batting. He was a key part of the successful 2003 cricket World Cup campaign. Gilchrist's skills as a keeper are sometimes questioned; few people would claim that he is the best keeper in Australia (for instance, Victorian wicketkeeper Darren Berry was regarded by many as the best Australian keeper of the 1990's and early 2000's). In this role, he is perhaps disadvantaged by his relatively tall stature for a pure wicketkeeper. However, while perhaps not as elegant as some he has managed to wicketkeep to legspinner Shane Warne effectively for many years, pulling off many stumpings, missing relatively few catching chances and letting through relatively few byes. As at May 2005 Gilchrist has captained Australia in six Test matches and eight one-day internationals. Recently he had been in a prolonged form slump, leading for calls for him to be dropped down the order from opening batsman to as low as number seven. After having been rested for two games he returned to his blazing best agsinst Sri Lanka on the 29th of January 2006 on his home ground the WACA smashing 116 runs off 105 balls to lead Australia to victory. His record as Australian One Day captain now stands at 9 wins and 1 loss. He is currently rated the world's number one ODI batsman (current as of 9th February 2005) displacing his captain Ricky Ponting.

Editor: Nishanth Gopinathan.