Originally Posted by Bahnz
Don't agree with this. If we ditched every mid-30's player in the comp just because they'll never make it for New Zealand, then the standard of the Plunket Shield would drop abruptly to the detriment of New Zealand cricket as a whole. You just have to look at the openers - the only ones that are making runs this year are the old fellas (Fulton, Redmond, Papps etc.). Ditch them, and our developing fast bowlers (or at least those who can stay on the park) would face a significantly easier challenge.
Yes, it would be ideal if teams like Auckland had a better mix of youth and experience, but we can't just treat the provinces purely as NZ development XI's. If they're the best players available, then they should be playing.
Obviously it would be better if New Zealand had a full 2nd XI domestic competition (like in the county championship) to reduce the jump up from club cricket to PS and help identify which players are most likely to cope, but we have to live in the real world: the NZC can't afford it. It's good that they've at least put together a truncated A competition this year. Seems like it might have awakened Siddons to fact that it's worth giving the local players a try every now and then.
Wasn't particularly trying to say that we ditch all over 30 players thats an extreme point of view. People like Fulton, Papps etc are examples that they are well deserved in a best XI in their respective provinces. My point is that a guy like Tim Mac, who ISN'T, making runs and holding up places of younger bats (Jeet Raval or eg) and literally forcing them to move provinces isn't good. One thing that doesn't help Auckland is its depth and sheer weight of numbers when it comes to talent pool, also Auckland would rather bring in older players from other provinces instead of nurturing the wealth of talent they so obviously possess locally.