Samit And Sir Garry:
Not A Comparison
Featured News | 19th July 2013
It’s totally wrong to make comparisons between players of different eras and especially unfair when one of those players is perhaps the greatest all-rounder of all-time.
Nevertheless, an opportunity to compare two of Nottinghamshire’s finest stalwarts presents itself this week, with Samit Patel having just played his 107th first class match for the county.
If you think 107 is a strange number to select it’s worth noting that it is the same number of first class appearances that Sir Garfield Sobers made for the Trent Bridge side.
I’m not – before we go any further – making a case for judging Samit against Sir G – merely having a look at their respective records for the county.
Sobers had been a Test icon for more than a decade when he arrived in Nottingham in 1968 – captain of his country and undisputedly the hottest property in world cricket.
His 107 appearances for Notts came at the end of his career. Indeed, his final first class match was played for the county – against Lancashire at Old Trafford, in August 1974.
By that time the Barbadian had just passed his 38th birthday and had been struggling with knee injuries and an assortment of other ailments for some time.
In all, Sobers played in 383 first class matches during his career, scoring 28,314 runs and taking 1,043 wickets.
His 107 matches for Notts produced the following figures:
174 innings, 30 not outs, 7,041 runs scored at an average of 48.89 with a highest score of 160 being the best of his 18 centuries.
With the ball Sir G could perform a variety of roles, from being a genuinely sharp new ball bowler, a steady and consistent swing bowler or a highly-skilled slow left-armer. For Notts he delivered:
17,128 balls taking 281 wickets at 25.62 apiece, with a best of 7-69. He took nine x 5-wicket hauls and also claimed 108 catches.
Samit’s debut came as a 17-year old in 2002. He is still, at 28, in the prime years of his cricketing life and has represented England in all three disciplines, Test, One Day Internationals and Twenty20 internationals.
Purely for the sake of comparison, here are his career stats for Notts from his first 107 matches – not too shabby at all, as I’m sure you’ll agree:
168 innings, 11 not outs, 6262 runs scored at an average of 39.88 with a highest score of 256 being the best of his 14 centuries.
12,542 balls taking 166 wickets at 38.31 apiece, with a best of 7-68. He has taken three x 5-wicket hauls and also claimed 65 catches.
The modern era features far more limited-over opportunities for players and Samit holds sway with more appearances in that format.
Sobers made 86 one-day appearances for Notts, scoring 2,553 runs, collecting 103 wickets and taking 37 catches.
Patel has already played in 128 one-day matches for Notts, scoring 3,373 runs and taking 120 wickets with 38 catches.
Additionally, Samit Patel is the Notts record-holder when it comes to most twenty20 appearances and he has scored more runs and taken more wickets than any other player, a format the West Indian legend didn’t appear in.
As I pointed out at the start, comparisons are futile – but it’s clear that Notts have been very fortunate to have had both players within their ranks.