2015 ICC Cricket World Cup winning captain Michael Clarke recently listed out his seven favourite batsmen from his playing days. And the list had some surprising elements, such as no mention of Rahul Dravid and the presence of only one Australian name in it. Michael Clarke entered the Australian team when it was at its peak in 2003 and the batsman has shared the dressing room with legends like Ricky Ponting and Adam Gilchrist. He later went on to become the captain of Australia and led the team to its fifth ODI World Cup title in 2015.
According to a report by Fox Sports, Michael Clarke was on the breakfast sports show that he is an analyst on, when he listed his favourite batsmen. He surprisingly picked only one Australian in his list and also did not include 'The Wall' Rahul Dravid. Here are the players Clarke picked.
Brian Lara: Clarke picked the West Indian legend for his well-rounded strokeplay and his ability to attack both pace and spin.
Sachin Tendulkar: Clarke called Sachin Tendulkar the most "technically complete" batsman that he has played against. The former Australian batsman then reflected on how the Australians used to wait for Sachin Tendulkar to make a mistake himself because his technique was always superior.
Virat Kohli: Clarke commended the Indian skipper Virat Kohli on being able to dominate all formats. He also lauded the Indian skipper for being able to make big hundreds like the 'Master Blaster' Sachin Tendulkar.
AB de Villiers: Michael Clarke picked AB de Villiers for his all-round batting ability and his dominance in the T20 format. Clarke added that he wanted to see De Villiers back in the South African colours. A lot has been speculated about AB de Villiers' return to T20 cricket in the T20 World Cup scheduled for October 2020.
Jacques Kallis: Michael Clarke was in awe of the Proteas all-rounder, who he called the "greatest all-rounder" he played against. He commended Kallis' ability to dominate the universally-feared Australian bowling lineup.
Ricky Ponting: Ponting was the only Australian entry in Clarke's list and the right-hander credited his former captain for being able to dominate all the attacks around the world. Despite having played with a lot of talented batsmen, Clarke felt that Ponting was distinguished because of the era of bowlers he could take on.
Kumar Sangakkara: Clarke picked the Sri Lankan wicketkeeper/batsman as his final pick because of how "forgotten" he can be sometimes. Clarke lauded Sangakkara's ability to dominate bowling attacks while batting at No.3. The 2015 World Cup winning captain even looked back at Sangakkara's run in that World Cup where he scored 4 hundreds on a trot.
Michael Clarke made his Australia debut in 2003 and played on until 2015. After Ricky Ponting's retirement, Clarke took over the responsibility of leading the Australian team. Over his career, Clarke was involved in a few controversies due to his lavish lifestyle and high-profile breakups. He has scored over 17000 international runs for Australia.