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View Poll Results: Who was better?

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  • Martin Crowe

    29 70.73%
  • Graham Gooch

    12 29.27%
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Thread: Who is better, Gooch or Martin Crowe??

  1. #1
    First Class Debutant Bouncer's Avatar
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    Who is better, Gooch or Martin Crowe??

    Who do you think was a better player. This comparison is little unfair as gooch was mostly an opening batsmen except first couple of seasons of his career. But who do you think was better player?
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  2. #2
    Hall of Fame Member _Ed_'s Avatar
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    I'll go for Gooch.

  3. #3
    International Coach HeathDavisSpeed's Avatar
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    Gooch here - though its a tough call.

    Though I'm more of a fan of bowlers than the glorified machines that sometimes masquerade as the cricketing phenomenon 'batsman', Gooch and Crowe, M are two of my favourite non-West Indian batsmen.

    Gooch was unstoppable at his best and he proved that he could be a success against the best on the toughest of wickets (123 against the Windies at Headingly I think). I'd expect he'd clear up and average over 50 against the bowling attacks these days; now that Terry Alderman is but a distant memory. His professionalism was required in an era when England seemed blessed with talented but hazy figures (Gower, Tufnell) though he was never at his best as captain. His bowling also provided some useful backup. The fact that he kept playing into his 40s is a demonstration of his professionalism and continual strive for fitness.

    Crowe was another exceptionally talented player; but one who probably failed to acheive all that he could have done. A career punctuated with debilitating injuries playing against tough bowling attacks and a one man show in an erratic batting order.

    I had the luck to see both of them score test match hundreds when they were at the peak of their powers. Great players.

    I expect some people to caveat Gooch's career with the Rebel Tour to South Africa and his patchy record as a captain, but Gooch was superior in my mind to the other key England batsmen of his era - Gatting, Gower, Atherton et. al.

    I wouldn't be surprised that Gooch loses this though, based on the caveats mentioned above.
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  4. #4
    International Coach howardj's Avatar
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    Loved Crowey.


  5. #5
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Bloody hell, this is a tough one.

    Will start by saying Martin Crowe, I've always thought, could have been so much better than he ended-up being. Like so many Kiwis, suffered injuries that reduced his potency and shortened his career. Crowe's career average is dragged down significantly by poorness early and a little late, but for the overwhelming part of his career he averaged 54, scoring heaps of runs against everyone and anyone. Now, this numbers just 57 games but as I say, I'm near enough certain it'd have been considerably more but for injury.

    Graham Gooch, on the other hand, was the first cricketer I truly idolised. Not surprisingly, this came in 1992, right smack in the middle of the time when Gooch was in one of the best periods of form any batsman in history has ever enjoyed (between his first Test of 1990 and his first of 1994, Gooch averaged 61, scoring heaps and heaps of runs off good bowling and bad alike). Gooch's career up to then had been fitful (he averaged 39, which is highly impressive, between 1978 and 1988, before a horror 1989 inspired his late scoring spree - however, this was if anything a disappointment, as he scored most heavily against the strongest attack he faced in this time, West Indies, and failed to cash-in as he should have against the weaker attacks). Gooch is one rare case where I feel a (relatively) small period at the end of a career seriously comes in level with a much longer one earlier (between '78 and '88 he played 66 Tests, and this would've been far more but for Rebel tours and the odd missed series; then between '90 and the opening Test in '94 he played 35), because of the fact that the latter one was so sensational.

    Nonetheless, it's impossible to say Gooch ever matched Crowe's proficiency before that late-on period. They both did very well against West Indies, but Crowe cashed-in far, far more effectively against the less extraordinary attacks. Yet Gooch played on for longer, stayed fit (not to Crowe's discredit that he didn't obviously, but inescapably fit > not fit) and in the end probably contributed more to English cricket's wellbeing than Crowe did to NZ's.

    I'll have to go Gooch, but I suspect if I was a Kiwi of my own age I'd probably go Crowe. Gooch is merely what I have known and loved, while Crowe has generally carried a fair air of mystery - I've only ever seen him bat a handful of times.
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  6. #6
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HeathDavisSpeed View Post
    Gooch was unstoppable at his best and he proved that he could be a success against the best on the toughest of wickets (123 against the Windies at Headingly I think). I'd expect he'd clear up and average over 50 against the bowling attacks these days; now that Terry Alderman is but a distant memory. His professionalism was required in an era when England seemed blessed with talented but hazy figures (Gower, Tufnell) though he was never at his best as captain. His bowling also provided some useful backup. The fact that he kept playing into his 40s is a demonstration of his professionalism and continual strive for fitness.
    Well, many have kept playing - but no-one bar Bradman and Hobbs has continued to be so extraordinarily good after their 40th b'day.

    As regards cleaning-up these days against the much weaker bowling-attacks... well, I honestly don't know. Certainly he could have done, as even the attacks lesser than West Indies' in the 1970s and 1980s were better than much of the fare we've generally had the last few years. And while Terry Alderman troubled him (and everyone else) much more than most in 1989, Alderman wasn't quite the only bowler Gooch had trouble with in his time. And there were several occasions where he failed to cash-in on bowling he should've been murdering. While Matthew Hayden can only dream of being close to Gooch's class, this was one area I think Hayden has comfortably over him (bashing weak attacks).

    And BTW, it was 155* against West Indies at Headingley. Just possibly the greatest innings ever played by an England batsman.

    BTW, regarding his captaincy... I hope you mean by "was never at his best as captain" that he wasn't a remarkably good captain! As his batting boom coincided exactly with his being given the captaincy. And while he was certainly too rigid in his thinking to be a captain of the calibre of a Brearley or Hussain (witness his pensioning-off of Gower based on personality clashes when Gower still had much to offer English cricket) he was certainly far from a poor captain, and England's record under his tenure for the first 3 years of it was very good. Only with the series in India and at home to Australia in 1992/93 and 1993 did things start to go badly wrong.

  7. #7
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    I voted Crowe. When he first emerged he really looked like he wouldn't be far behind Tendulkar (he was around long before Tendulkar, I mean in retrospect).

  8. #8
    State Vice-Captain Debris's Avatar
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    This board has gone a bit player-comparison poll crazy lately. Is it a sign of boredom with cricket on at the moment?

  9. #9
    State Vice-Captain gettingbetter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Debris View Post
    This board has gone a bit player-comparison poll crazy lately. Is it a sign of boredom with cricket on at the moment?
    Yeah, I've noticed that too. The parody ones are just tripe. In saying that I've been tempted to make my own polls (Steyn v Asif being the only one I recall). Probably should make a poll asking about polls.

  10. #10
    State Vice-Captain Debris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gettingbetter View Post
    Probably should make a poll asking about polls.
    Was thinking the same thing.

  11. #11
    Hall of Fame Member Goughy's Avatar
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    It’s a tough one. Gooch went from ordinary to incredible almost overnight. He almost had two separate careers. Crowe was one of the most amazing batsmen of his generation. He was a special talent. If he would have played 120 Tests he would be thought of as one of the greatest ever. However it didn’t happen that way and apart from may be the South African players during apartheid, he is one of the guys whose careers never came to their potential.
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  12. #12
    Hall of Fame Member Son Of Coco's Avatar
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    Martin Crowe. Graham Gooch was English
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  13. #13
    Cricketer Of The Year Anil's Avatar
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    crowe was definitely the more talented batsman and absolute treat to watch when in full flow, however gooch had a longer career and probably achieved more especially in the latter half of it, he was also one of the best players against sheer pace that i've seen...

  14. #14
    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Debris View Post
    This board has gone a bit player-comparison poll crazy lately. Is it a sign of boredom with cricket on at the moment?
    Whatever it is, most of them are pretty interesting.

  15. #15
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    Gooch had the tougher job having to open against the WIndian battery and doing much better than most openers of his generation. He will be remembered a lot longer than Crowe

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