Steve Waugh picks Gilly ahead of Tendulkar, Murali and Kallis as his greatest 21st century player

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Steve Waugh picks Gilly ahead of Tendulkar, Murali and Kallis as his greatest 21st century player

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SportsCafe Desk

10/22/2016

Steve Waugh has picked Adam Gilchrist as his greatest player of the 21st century ahead of record-breaking Sachin Tendulkar, Muttiah Muralitharan and Jacques Kallis, saying the keeper-bat had the greatest impact on the contemporary game as the pioneer in the evolution of the modern-day wicketkeeper.

“I think the guy who’s changed the game the most you would have to say is Adam Gilchrist,” Aussie great Waugh explained his choice for cricket.com.au's ongoing series of Best Player of the 21st century.

“I was lucky enough to be his captain. He definitely changed how wicketkeepers are perceived now and if you do that that means you’ve had a big impact on the game.

“He’s put a lot more pressure on wicketkeepers because they’ve got to be great batsmen now so they probably all hate him. To do that is pretty incredible."

Gilchrist, a three-time World Cup winner, had to wait for over three years to break into the Test side after making his ODI debut in 1996 because of the form shown by another Australian great Ian Healy. But once he broke in, he made the place his own.

The Aussie then inspired an entire new generation of aggressive ’keeper-batsmen. Gilchrist scored 5570 runs in 96 Tests, including 17 hundreds and 26 fifties. He also held 379 catches and effected 37 stumpings.

The left-hander also scored 9619 runs in 287 ODIs with 16 hundreds and 55 fifties, not to forget the 417 catches 55 stumpings.

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