New Delhi: Former India captain Rahul Dravid paid glowing tributes to his one time contemporary and powerful Australian opener Matthew Hayden terming him as one player, who was equally adept on bouncy pitches of Australia as well as the turners in the sub-continent.
"A phenomenal player. A dominating batsmen for Australia at the start. Someone who (was) equally adept in bouncy conditions of Australia and in the sub-continent. The technique that he had against spin and ability to sweep deliveries that others probably wouldn't have had a chance to get to, made him a formidable opponent in any condition," Dravid commented on 'Modern Masters', a video series on ESPN Cricinfo.
Due to his built, Dravid remembered Hayden as an incredibly "imposing batsman".
"An incredibly imposing batsman. He had this sort of wide stance like a lot of modern batsmen have. A bat that came of a very high back-lift and sometimes in an arc from around second slip. It came down in one big flow or one big swoop," Dravid said.
"His ability to just pick up good length balls from off stump and deposit them over mid-on and mid-wicket was incredible."
According to Dravid, Hayden certainly had a specific plan while playing against spinners in India.
"He had a definite plan. Not only did he master the sweep and played it in on one place but he also had this ability to sweep different parts of the ground.
"So he swept finer sometimes, squarer, if you moved the field around a little bit, he was able to hit you slightly in front of square sometimes. A player, who used that sweep differently and not as a desperate measure as we sometimes see foreign batsmen do. He used it as a calculated plan to upset the bowlers."