So far, if not for greats like Sachin Tendulkar and Muttiah Muralitharan, there have hardly been any followers for any of the existing players in international cricket. In fact, players like Dhoni and Sehwag have been inspired from Sachin Tendulkar to make it to the big stage. One has to ask Sachin Tendulkar, Brian Lara or Muttiah Muralitharan as to who or what on earth inspired them to take cricket as a career. Of course, though money factor exists in today's cricket, that was not the case some decade ago when Muttiah Muralitharan and Sachin Tendulkar were in their initial stages of their career.
Today's cricketers are more inspired by money and fame rather than the game or the challenges that come from within. Anyways, coming to the matter, a New Zealand cricketer Peter Ingram has said that it was after watching India's dashing opener Virender Sehwag that made him take the bat in his hands. The influence of Virender Sehwag on Ingram is to such an extent that though Peter Ingram has been repeated criticism for his lack of footwork, Ingram terms it to be the replica of his so called idol Virender Sehwag's style. If one goes by nature, their dates of birth differ by just 5 days.
At the same time, if their success in international cricket is considered, they stand way apart. Sehwag has gone too forward with two triple hundreds and six double centuries against his name in international test cricket which is bettered by only Sir Don Bradman, Walter Hammond and Brian Lara. Not even Sachin Tendulkar (Sehwag's batting idol) has been able to achieve the same in test cricket. It has been equaled by Pakistan's Javed Miandad and Sri Lanka's Marvan Attapattu, both of whom have 6 double hundreds against their names. However, this has to be justified if at all one has to believe that Sehwag is Ingram's batting idol.
Idols have to always stand apart from their followers in any field or else, who on earth would follow them? Likewise, cricketing greats like Vivian Richards, Clive Lloyd and Ian Botham have been an inspiration to batting youngsters after their retirement and so has been the case with bowlers like Shaun Pollock and Glenn McGrath. They were an inspiration after their team started making news for the good reasons. Likewise, someone like Andrew Flintoff and Craig McDermott could not be an inspiration though deserving to be so. Jonty Rhodes has hardly inspired anyone to take fielding as a career option.