Morgan vs Carberry: should county cricket be abandoned?
If performances in county cricket are not being used to select players for the England team, then what purpose does it serve?
Here, I'm looking at the case of Michael Carberry vs Eoin Morgan....
In last year's Division One, Carberry scored 1251 runs for Hampshire from 12 matches at an average of 69.5.
In last year's Division Two, Morgan scored 413 runs for Middlesex from 10 matches at an average of 24.3.
But, while Carberry plays for Hants against Yorkshire, discarded after only being tried out for one Test in Bangladesh, Morgan makes his Test debut against the same opponents at Lords. Why? Because he makes runs in hit-and-giggle 20/20 cricket, and suddenly finds himself propelled into the Test team ahead of more deserving candidates. That's like saying Kieron Pollard deserves his place in the WI side because he's an IPL star!
Carberry himself has said that he doesn't know what he needs to do to get selected to play for England, musing that maybe he should've been born outside England....
This case really rankles me, because it comes after Norman Tebbit made his ridiculous statement about immigrant communities in England supporting cricket teams like India, Pakistan and the West Indies. And yet, here is a guy who's the son of Barbadian and Guyanese parents, born in England, who wants to play for England, and the England selectors give a debut to a mercenary from Ireland, who played for Ireland, who only qualifies on the basis of having played some cricket for Middesex.
Worse, county cricket should be the yardstick to select players for the longer form of the game, and it's totally disregarded in this selection matter. What happened to the principle of giving a player a run when he's selected? Clearly, that doesn't apply to Carberry, while it will probably be used for Morgan. One law for the Medes, and another for the Persians....