“Look, I think right now MS (Dhoni) is the top wicketkeeper. He is very quick to react, has great hands and an uncanny sense of anticipation—traits which make him the very best. I have been following for him for sometime now,” said Gilchrist.
Gilchrist was also impressed with the way in which Dhoni has managed to carry along his role with dignity. “What impresses me most about Dhoni is the manner in which he has carried himself all these years. “I have not seen him even lose his temper or attempt to fledge at any batsman. In these days of fiercely competitive cricket, he stands out as a perfect role model for young cricketers,” felt Gilchrist.
When asked whether the role of wicketkeepers had changed in the context of the modern day game, he said,” yes a bit. Especially in the context of batting. I feel nowadays all wicketkeepers have to be good batsmen. I think all top wicketkeepers have to reasonable batting skills,” said Gilchrist.
When asked to name his best knock so far, the 45-year-old left hand batsman also picked the innings that he played in the 2007 World Cup final as his perfect performance. In that match Gilli slammed 149 runs in 104 balls in the final match against Sri Lanka, which Australia won by 53 runs via Duckworth Lewis method.
“My perfect innings would be the final of the World Cup 2007. And all top athletes know that we build up so much for the big events and it does not always go perfectly,” Gilchrist said. In the previous World Cup finals the performances were okay but everyone wants to score a hundred and that happened in 2007 and that was my perfect performance,” he added.
With the Ashes starting from November 23, both England and Australia want to overpower each other but Gilchrist said he wanted the series to be evenly fought.
“I expect Ashes series to be evenly fought. Both teams are equally matched but Australians would start as the favourites because of the bowling unit. And if Australia kept their bowlers fit throughout the series, then they are the favourites,” Gilchrist said.
Gilchrist praised England all-rounder Ben Stokes and said he was the leader of the team and his absence might give Australians an advantage.
Stokes is still in England awaiting the outcome of a police probe into his involvement in a brawl outside a nightclub.
It must be mentioned here that legendary sportsperson Adam Gilchrist, Lothar Matthaus, Michael Johnson and Vishwanathan Anand came together to decode their secret of success at the Royal Stag Barrel Select Perfect Strokes function in the capital on Thursday.