Ian Botham,but its really close.
Ian Botham,but its really close.
I heard Imran was better than both of them.
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Shouldn't that be Sir Ian Botham? He didn't slay a dragon and save a Princess for us to treat him as any other common man.
Just finished the Botham bio, once I would have said it very close, but now I think for a period Botham close to the greatest AR ever
You know it makes sense.
Botham between 1977 and 1981, especially sans-captaincy, was sensational beyond sensation. Something Kapil Dev - even Imran Khan - never managed.
But sadly, it was only for a relatively short time. Had he twigged some sort of back muscle after the First Test in India in 1981\82 and never been able to bowl again, then damaged a cruciate-ligament after the first-innings of the Third Test in 1984, maybe he might just be remembered as the greatest all-rounder ever, or someone who was completely ruined by injury.
As it is, though, he kept going and became a wholly average player for a fair time. I don't really think this makes any impact on his earlier skills (unlike the C_Cs of this World) so hence I'd just say.
"Early" Botham >>>>>>>>>>> Kapil. "Later" Botham <<<<< Kapil.
Kapil who really did remain remarkably the same with bat and ball virtually thoughout his career.
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Kapils feat of 5000+ runs and 400+ wkts will take a while to beat.
However, Botham is one of the few AR on my list who could be picked for either batting or bowling. (Kapil would never be picked for batting alone).
Kapil played better cricket for longer than Botham did, however at their peaks Botham clearly superior.
Kapil Dev looks like Kermit the Frog where as Botham only looks like one of the hecklers on the balcony.
This isnt even a question.
Botham by the proverbial country mile.
No matter how bad he got later in his career, he will always have the fact that for a period he was challenging for possibly the best player to have played the game.
Bonus points for Kapil and his longevity but no extra bonus points can make a Champonship Level team compete for the Premiership.
I his favour, Kapil was consistent. His bowling average barely changed from around 30 for the majority of his career.
Botham took his 200th wicket in only his 41st Test at an average of 21 by which point he had also 8 Test centuries.
There has been noone in the history of the game to put the 2 disciplines together like Botham did.
I still find it amazing that after 25 Tests he averaged over 40 with the bat and under 20 with the ball. Different league to numbers anyone else can claim.
EDIT- The above is purely for Test cricket. Kapil may shade ODIs
Last edited by Goughy; 31-10-2007 at 08:42 AM.
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