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Thread: Is it fair to rate players based on their first class records ?

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    Is it fair to rate players based on their first class records ?

    I have obviously heard a lot about players like Graeme Pollock and Barry Richards. Everyone who has seen them play includes them in the top echelon of players to have played the game. Whilst I am prepared to accept that they were great batsmen, I cannot see why they should be rated over players who excelled at test cricket .

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    International Vice-Captain Jungle Jumbo's Avatar
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    Simply because the Test careers of Richards and Pollock were severely limited by South Africa's exclusion from international cricket due to apartheid. Taken together, their outstanding first-class records and brilliant, if short, Test records suggest that it would be very unlikely that they would not be among the all-time greats had they not been prevented from playing more Tests through no fault of their own.

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    State Regular Maximus0723's Avatar
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    No it's not.

    Hence why they are so overrated.

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    Cricketer Of The Year zaremba's Avatar
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    It's a relevant factor that needs to be taken into account, along with others.


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    Cricketer Of The Year wpdavid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Avada Kedavra View Post
    I have obviously heard a lot about players like Graeme Pollock and Barry Richards. Everyone who has seen them play includes them in the top echelon of players to have played the game. Whilst I am prepared to accept that they were great batsmen, I cannot see why they should be rated over players who excelled at test cricket .
    Graeme Pollock played a fair number of tests didn't he?

    Beyond that, it's not unreasonable to compare their domestic records to those of their contempories and try and make some sort of judgment. It'll never be an exact science, but so what? fwiw I wouldn't include Richards in my all time XI for the reason you stated, although I'd happily include him in my favourite XI based on what I saw of him playing for Hants.

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    Cricket Web Staff Member fredfertang's Avatar
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    Barry Richards averaged the best part of 80 in the WSC "supertests" he played in - although he just played Australia and not the WSC West Indians - still pretty impressive though

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    Hall of Fame Member Goughy's Avatar
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    I dont think it is fair to judge people on the FC records but with guys like Pollock, Richards (B), Proctor etc FC records are only a small part of what we use to judge them. We read accounts, we draw on our memories we talk to people that know them etc.

    Of course noone can ever say that Richards was a better Test player than Greenidge as Greenidge accomplished so much more but many can say that Richards was a better batsman than Greenidge based on watching them and assessing their ability.

    I dont think a lot of these guys are being judged on their FC records but rather on how good they were from watching them play.
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    Quote Originally Posted by wpdavid View Post
    Graeme Pollock played a fair number of tests didn't he?

    Beyond that, it's not unreasonable to compare their domestic records to those of their contempories and try and make some sort of judgment. It'll never be an exact science, but so what? fwiw I wouldn't include Richards in my all time XI for the reason you stated, although I'd happily include him in my favourite XI based on what I saw of him playing for Hants.
    Fair enough.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wpdavid View Post
    Graeme Pollock played a fair number of tests didn't he?

    Beyond that, it's not unreasonable to compare their domestic records to those of their contempories and try and make some sort of judgment. It'll never be an exact science, but so what? fwiw I wouldn't include Richards in my all time XI for the reason you stated, although I'd happily include him in my favourite XI based on what I saw of him playing for Hants.
    Yeah Pollock played about 20 tests. While only a fool would scoff at a record like that, is it reasonable to compare him to, say, a Lara or a Border ? I understand that it isn't Pollock's fault that he didn't get to play more tests but....

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jungle Jumbo View Post
    Simply because the Test careers of Richards and Pollock were severely limited by South Africa's exclusion from international cricket due to apartheid. Taken together, their outstanding first-class records and brilliant, if short, Test records suggest that it would be very unlikely that they would not be among the all-time greats had they not been prevented from playing more Tests through no fault of their own.
    I do realise that it was due to circumstances beyond their control that they didn't play more tests. Their short test records do suggest that they could have been great players, but then they could also have declined sharply if they had played say, 50 tests more. Someone like Hussey is a good example. He averaged something like 80 after 20 tests if I am not mistaken. Look at what his average his now...

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    International Vice-Captain Jungle Jumbo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Avada Kedavra View Post
    I do realise that it was due to circumstances beyond their control that they didn't play more tests. Their short test records do suggest that they could have been great players, but then they could also have declined sharply if they had played say, 50 tests more. Someone like Hussey is a good example. He averaged something like 80 after 20 tests if I am not mistaken. Look at what his average his now...
    Yes, they could, but like it said, it was unlikely. Besides, averaging as much as Hussey did on today's pitches (yawn, Zzz etc) isn't quite as improbable.

    Goughy's argument is probably the best counter to that above.

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    Englishman BoyBrumby's Avatar
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    It's probably a knottier question for chaps who've had distinguished FC careers, but whose test records are mediocre (I suppose Hick & Ramprakash are the obvious recent examples). Would anyone rate them as better batsman than someone like Collingwood, who averages far more at the highest level than he does in the first class game?

    I think cases could be made either way, but it'd be interesting to see where people stand on the subject.
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    Hall of Fame Member Goughy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoyBrumby View Post
    It's probably a knottier question for chaps who've had distinguished FC careers, but whose test records are mediocre (I suppose Hick & Ramprakash are the obvious recent examples). Would anyone rate them as better batsman than someone like Collingwood, who averages far more at the highest level than he does in the first class game?

    I think cases could be made either way, but it'd be interesting to see where people stand on the subject.
    Yes. Hick especially

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    Englishman BoyBrumby's Avatar
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    Was kinda hoping for more than a three word answer, tbf.

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    Cricket Web Staff Member fredfertang's Avatar
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    .. and then I start thinking about the likes of Gower and Botham and what they might have achieved with the steely resolve of a Boycott ............ and then I realise the answer must be what Boycott achieved

    but Barry Richards was different - I have never seen anyone, not even Gower, seem to have as much time in which to play his shots - only batter I've ever seen who did actually leave me thinking that if he really didn't want to get out then he wouldn't be

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