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TBF at the time Arnold averaged in the mid 30s and his average wasn't excessively boosted by runs against Zimbabwe and a extremely poor West Indies.
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Oh, Arnold was doing OK, and if Aravinda hadn't returned I'd have had no quip with him staying in the side.
But, well, if it came down to Samaraweera, who had boosted his tally with said cheap runs, and Arnold who hadn't, I'd have to go for Samaraweera. Aravinda being recalled, especially given it was England where the tour was, was perfectly justified IMO and he played pretty well on said tour (then feasted on Bangladesh).
If your picking a player purely on batting then yeah I guess you would go for Samaraweera. But I think people under estimated the difference guys like Arnold, Dilshan and Mahanama added to our fielding unit for Sri Lanka. Basically the difference (for Dilshan and Mahanama) for us being the worst fielding side in the world and being an par fielding side. If it is a line ball call I would always go for the better fielder considering how many weak links we have in the field in our side, including Samaraweera.
I'd say that was fair enough if you were only talking a small difference in batting-average - Mahanama, for instance, was never exactly battling against a barrage of outstanding players jostling to take his place.
Dilshan is a bit different, for mine, as I've always thought he had potential as a batsman and have never been sorry to see him persevered with.
But if you're talking someone averaging in the 80s or over 100 against someone averaging in the 30s? No way, for mine, should fielding come into it then. And more than ever if it's Tests rather than ODIs that are up for consideration.
15 months later, where does Samaraweera rank for you now.
Stats wise he is Sri Lankan's 3rd best batsmen after Sangakkara and Jayawardene. Though anyone with half brain knows Aravinda De Silva is better.
Away from the sub continent is average is still only 31, but away from home was 38 prior to this Test, so it may increase above 40.
Minnow basher maybe, but he has a decent record against all side bar Australia, England and South Africa (only 2 Tests).
Reckon he done enough to be ranked 5th all time for Sri Lanka behind; Sangakkara, Jayawardene, De Silva and Atapattu.
For as long as there is limited overs cricket - of ten, twenty or fifty overs - there will remain the Sri Lankan spinners' mid-innings choke
Ranatunga no doubt scored runs in tough conditions more often and was a better rounded player. He wasn't as dominate as Samaraweera for mine, when he got going. Though for him and Jayasuriya I can see a case for being better players.
But for Tillakaratne when did he ever score runs in tough conditions. Most of his big runs were at home or in flat conditions away from home. There was about two innings his whole career against Australia and South Africa, where he score runs away from the sub continent and against decent attacks.
I tend to think that Jayasuriya is still ahead of Samaraweera and Atapattu is also only narrowly ahead, so he'd be in 6th place for mine. So he's behind Kumar, Mahela, Aravinda, Sanath and Marvan.
Hashan, Asanka and Arjuna follow.
yea he was definitely a better test player than Samaraweera.
Tillekeratne actually did quite good in the early 90's. Actually when both Samaraweera and Tillekeratne played/batted together from 2001-2004 I thought that Tillekeratne was the slightly better batsmen. Quite close though.
Looking back at SL's batting its a shame that Gurasinghe retired so early, he could have accomplished so much more.
my list of SL best test batsmen would be,
Mahela-Aravinda (cant pick one)
[quote=Prince EWS;1377218]but you don't take 348 first class wickets @ 23.34 bowling rubbish. quote]
Seems as though he doesn't bowl at all anymore, his first class wickets tally has been improved in 18 months.
Glad to see him (hopefully - he's 180* now) notch up a double against this Pakistani team.
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I must confess to being a long time hater of Samaraweera. Recently my opinion of him has improved but I loathe to rate him above Jayasuriya, Atapattu, Ranatunga or even Tillakaratne. Tillakaratne remember scored some wonderful hundreds in Perth, Centurion and Dunedin as well as in Pakistan when conditions there were far more hostile. Moreover these players faced some serious bowling attacks. Ranatunga made his debut in 1982 at age 19.
Samaraweera, though statistically impressive, has done little out the subcontient and has mainly imposed himself on weak bowling attacks.
I would still put folks like Dias, Mendis and Gurusinha above Samaraweera in the pantheon of Sri Lankan bastmen.
For mine Sangakkara and Jayawardene are still behind Aravinda De Silva. They have much still to prove and as much time to do it in.
Last edited by lionheart; 22-02-2009 at 02:25 AM.
Never saw them bat before but my Dad rates Anura Tennekoon and Michael Tissera as two of the best batsmen produced by Sri Lanka. Unfortunately, this was before Sri Lanka got Test status.
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