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Thread: Best England team, ever?

  1. #31
    International Vice-Captain a massive zebra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Camel56
    Yes perhaps they arent bad figures but certainly not a match winner int he same mould as S K Warne.
    His average excluding that phenomenal series is still better than Warne's career average.
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  2. #32
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    Average alone doesnt tell the full story. I think wisden putting Warne in the team of the century does though. Warne well and truely better than Laker.
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  3. #33
    Hall of Fame Member steds's Avatar
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    I don't think the two are comparable, as the game now is so different to when Laker played.

  4. #34
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    If Laker were to play now, he'd be considered wholly average, I can categorically assure you of that.
    If Ashley Giles' career were to have formed in the wet 60s (when Derek Underwood's career started, and in which he began averaging something like 17 per wicket) he'd, I can equally surely tell you, be considered an all-time great in the manner of Laker.
    Some people can't comprehend that, it just will not register that spin-bowling is a totally different kettle-of-fish, and it's very unfair on fingerspinners of today to say that all these former bowlers must have been infinately better than them.
    How can it possibly be coincidence that before 1970 there were plenty of great English spinners (Rhodes, Blythe, Verity, Lock [everyone always seems to forget him], Laker, Underwood) - and no-one after? It can't. Yet it is simply beyond comprehension for most that Emburey, Edmonds, Giles, Croft and the like could conceivably have been as good.
    We don't, meanwhile, know how Warne, Murali et all would have fared had there been spin-friendly conditions occurring with the regularity they occurred with before 1970, let alone before 1930. The fact that Grimmett, O'Reilly and the like had figures that were merely as good suggests that Warne and Murali might be better, but it really is not possible to do anything but guess (or, of course, make biased judgements in favour of the more recent players, a choice many make).
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    Who considers Laker an all-time great? No one i know does. The fact is he is remembered for one ashes series in 1956 and really only for one test in the series at Manchester. Apart from that what else is he remembered for? Nothing.
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  6. #36
    Eyes not spreadsheets marc71178's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard
    If Laker were to play now, he'd be considered wholly average, I can categorically assure you of that.
    Of course you can, but then again the number of times that real life has shown your perfect world of Cricket to be wrong means I pay no heed to your catergorical assurance.
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  7. #37
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Typical of you, pay attention to the minority and hide your eyes from the majority.
    Uncanny resemblence to the First-Class-Test thing, here...
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  8. #38
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Camel56
    Who considers Laker an all-time great? No one i know does. The fact is he is remembered for one ashes series in 1956 and really only for one test in the series at Manchester. Apart from that what else is he remembered for? Nothing.
    Except for the many times he took large bags of wickets for not many runs.
    His most significant achievement, indeed, was his part in bowling out the Aussies in the second-innings at The Oval in 1953, and helping regain The Ashes after 20 years.
    Laker is considered by most people to be one of the best spinners of all-time. Yet were Ashley Giles and his playing eras to be swapped, it'd be the other way around.
    Fingerspinners cannot be great bowlers from 1970 onwards, unless they manage to play most of their cricket in the subcontinent.
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  9. #39
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    Richard does make a good point (albeit indirectly); I doubt spinners like Laker would have been quite as effective today. Ignoring pitches, changes to teh LBW laws mean that spinners find it a heck of a lot tougher to get a LBW decisions go their way. The instances of batsmen being almost guaranteed a not-out if they played forward enough and attempt a shot weren't anything resembling a guarantee before the 70's. Batsmen were being given out if an LBW just 'looked' out and as long as, in the opinion of the umpire, it was going on to hit the stumps, that was enough. Now, particularly for spinners going around the wicket, it's very tough to get one going your way.

  10. #40
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Given the extraordinary number of lbw decisions which actually had everything right but "looked not out" on first sight (usually involving "getting a big stride") IMO the retro-theory was the better.
    All batsmen, through a career, receive far more good luck than bad.
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  11. #41
    International Vice-Captain a massive zebra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Camel56
    Average alone doesnt tell the full story. I think wisden putting Warne in the team of the century does though. Warne well and truely better than Laker.
    No Warne being in the Team of the Century just shows the bias most people have towards modern players over those they have not seen. Had Warne played in the 50s and Laker in the 90s it would be the other way round.
    Last edited by a massive zebra; 25-11-2004 at 05:37 PM.

  12. #42
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    I understand what you're saying Rich but even though I'm a bowler (and this hurts to say), I think LBW's are given a little too readily by umpires in Tests these days. I don't think the standard is high enough, personally. For mine I see too many LBW's given out when the ball as clearly pitched outside the line of the stumps, etc.

  13. #43
    Eyes not spreadsheets marc71178's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard
    Typical of you, pay attention to the minority and hide your eyes from the majority.
    Uncanny resemblence to the First-Class-Test thing, here...
    Do explain this comment then..

  14. #44
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Top_Cat
    I understand what you're saying Rich but even though I'm a bowler (and this hurts to say), I think LBW's are given a little too readily by umpires in Tests these days. I don't think the standard is high enough, personally. For mine I see too many LBW's given out when the ball as clearly pitched outside the line of the stumps, etc.
    It ain't fair to compare everyone to Harold Bird. It's simply not possible for everyone else to have the Umpiring talent he did.
    The fact is, most Umpires make mistakes with a regularity that is most un-ideal. It's probably the case that this has been true throughout the game's history, we just don't know because the stuff that can reveal mistakes has evolved rapidly in the last 4 or 5 years.
    So why don't we use the stuff that reveals the mistakes to avert them? Well, that would make sense, wouldn't it - we've got to wait for the decision that makes sense for... well... it took 220 years for no-balls and wides to be counted in themselves, rather than just only if the ball is a dot-ball.
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  15. #45
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marc71178
    Do explain this comment then..
    It means that you ignore the fact that I'm wrong very rarely and concentrate on the tiny number of times that I'm not right.
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