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Playing selector: Lets pick the best test XI of different eras

bagapath

International Captain
Having gone through several lists of all-time XIs and polls to choose greatest knocks, partnerships etc. I propose to start a thread in which all of us can play selectors and choose the best team from the past two decades. It might be just a variation of other discussions we've had. But putting together a team with our various national, cultural backgrounds, knowledge bases and understanding of the game might be interesting.

I do have some ideas on how it can be done. Tell me if it makes sense or if we need to change a few rules to start a selection process.

1) The team should be the best possible XI representing players who have actively played test cricket from the English summer of 1986 to the English summer of 2005 - including both seasons. We will base our selection only on performances in the given time frame.

This gives us 20 years of test cricket to base our opinions on. It is not too long and not too short. Also, it might be the correct era for most of our forum members to have a first hand opinion on.

2) The team will have two specialist openers, three middle order batsmen, one genuine all-rounder, one wicket keepr, two fast bowlers and two spinners. If the all-rounder happens to be a spinner (which is highly unlikely for this era), we can choose three fast bowlers and one specialist spinner.

3) A batsman with bowling skills or a bowler with ability score runs or a player with greater fielding ability can be given extra weightage when we discuss their places. We will also select a captain.

4) Since we have very knowledgable members with good writing skills we will have an open discussion for each slot before starting the poll. The poll conductor can decide whent to start and end the polls. I am not experienced in running polls. If someone with the knowledge can volunteer, it can avoid a lot of confusion.

5) As a strategy we can consider having batsmen of different temperaments, left-right cominations, spinners of different styles etc. But it doesnt have to be a rule. We will decide on a case by case basis on what suits the team we are choosing.

6) We will deal with the whole process in a phased manner. The six stages will be: Openers, middle-order, all-rounder, keeper, fast bowlers and spinners.

I will try to name all the possible names who have played in the given time frame. We can add delete before setlling down on the final list.

1. Openers:

Australia: Boon, Taylor, Slater, Hayden, Langer
England: Gooch, Atherton, Vaughan, Trescothick, Strauss
India: Gavaskar, Navjot Sidhu, Sehwag
Pakistan: Anwar, Sohail
New Zealand: Wright, Fleming
South Africa: Gary Kirsten, Gibbs, Smith
Sri Lanka: Jayasuriya, Attapattu
West Indies: Haynes, Greenidge, Gayle

2. Middle Order:

Australia: Mark Waugh, Seve Waugh, Allan Border, Ricky Ponting, Damien Martyn, Adam Gilchrist, Dean Jones
England: Gower, Thorpe
India: Amarnath, Vengsarkar, Azharuddin, Tendulkar, Dravid, Laxman, Ganguly
Pakistan: Miandad, Salim Malik, Inzamam, Mohammad Yousuf, Younis Khan
New Zealand: Martin Crowe
South Africa: Kallis, Cullinan
Sri Lanka: De Silva, Jayawardane, Sangakkara
Zimbabwe: Andy Flower
West Indies: Richards, Lara, Chanderpaul

3. All Rounders: Imran, Botham, Kapil, Hadlee, Cairns, Pollock, Kallis, Flintoff, Akram.

4. Wicket Keepers: Healy, Gilchrist, Stewart, Russell, Mongia, Moin Khan, Latif, Ian Smith, Parore, Boucher,

Sangakkara, Dujon, Jaobs, Andy Flower,

5. Fast Bowlers:

Australia: McDermott, Hughes, McGrath, Gillespie, Lee
England: Botham, Gough, Caddick, Harmison, Hoggard, Flintoff
India: Kapil Dev, Srinath
Pakistan: Imran, Akram, Waqar, Akhthar
New Zealand: Hadlee, Cairns, Bond (??)
South Africa: Donald, Pollock, Ntini
Sri Lanka: Vaas
Zimbabwe: Streak
West Indies: Marshall, Ambrose, Walsh, Bishop

6. Spinners:

Australia: Warne, McGill
India: Kumble, Harbhajan
Pakistan: Qadir, Mushtaq, Saqlain
New Zealand: Vettori
Sri Lanka: Muralitharan
 
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aussie tragic

International Vice-Captain
Please add Dean Jones to the Middle Order (I know there are three better batsman, but with a test average of 46.55 and his phenomenal 210 vs India in 86, he should at least be considered).
 

UncleTheOne

U19 Captain
aussie tragic said:
Please add Dean Jones to the Middle Order (I know there are three better batsman, but with a test average of 46.55 and his phenomenal 210 vs India in 86, he should at least be considered).
Doesn't really matter seen as he won't make the final XI.
 

aussie tragic

International Vice-Captain
UncleTheOne said:
Doesn't really matter seen as he won't make the final XI.
So by that logic we may as leave out Gower, Thorpe, Atherton, Stewart & Caddick as they wouldn't make a second XI :p
 

UncleTheOne

U19 Captain
aussie tragic said:
So by that logic we may as leave out Gower, Thorpe, Atherton, Stewart & Caddick as they wouldn't make a second XI :p
Go for it.

Edit: Although,

Gower>>Jones.
 
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bagapath

International Captain
aussie tragic said:
Please add Dean Jones to the Middle Order (I know there are three better batsman, but with a test average of 46.55 and his phenomenal 210 vs India in 86, he should at least be considered).
Ok. I have.
 

Sir Redman

State Vice-Captain
bagapath said:
1. Openers:

Australia: Boon, Taylor, Slater, Hayden, Langer
England: Gooch, Atherton, Vaughan, Trescothick, Strauss
India: Gavaskar, Navjot Sidhu, Sehwag
Pakistan: Anwar, Sohail
New Zealand: Wright, Fleming
South Africa: Gary Kirsten, Gibbs, Smith
Sri Lanka: Jayasuriya, Attapattu
West Indies: Haynes, Greenidge, Gayle

2. Middle Order:

Australia: Mark Waugh, Seve Waugh, Allan Border, Ricky Ponting, Damien Martyn, Adam Gilchrist, Dean Jones
England: Gower, Thorpe
India: Amarnath, Vengsarkar, Azharuddin, Tendulkar, Dravid, Laxman, Ganguly
Pakistan: Miandad, Salim Malik, Inzamam, Mohammad Yousuf, Younis Khan
New Zealand: Martin Crowe
South Africa: Kallis, Cullinan
Sri Lanka: De Silva, Jayawardane, Sangakkara
Zimbabwe: Andy Flower
West Indies: Richards, Lara, Chanderpaul

3. All Rounders: Imran, Botham, Kapil, Hadlee, Cairns, Pollock, Kallis, Flintoff, Akram.

4. Wicket Keepers: Healy, Gilchrist, Stewart, Russell, Mongia, Moin Khan, Latif, Ian Smith, Parore, Boucher,

Sangakkara, Dujon, Jaobs, Andy Flower,

5. Fast Bowlers:

Australia: McDermott, Hughes, McGrath, Gillespie, Lee
England: Botham, Gough, Caddick, Harmison, Hoggard, Flintoff
India: Kapil Dev, Srinath
Pakistan: Imran, Akram, Waqar, Akhthar
New Zealand: Hadlee, Cairns, Bond (??)
South Africa: Donald, Pollock, Ntini
Sri Lanka: Vaas
Zimbabwe: Streak
West Indies: Marshall, Ambrose, Walsh, Bishop

6. Spinners:

Australia: Warne, McGill
India: Kumble, Harbhajan
Pakistan: Qadir, Mushtaq, Saqlain
New Zealand: Vettori
Sri Lanka: Muralitharan
I'd scrub Fleming off that openers list and replace him with Richardson. If you want Fleming on the shortlist he should be as a middle order player, but I'd be tempted to take Andrew Jones over him anyway.
 

bagapath

International Captain
Added Richie Richardson to the Middle Order. Taken off Fleming from Openers.


1. Openers:

Australia: Boon, Taylor, Slater, Hayden, Langer
England: Gooch, Atherton, Vaughan, Trescothick, Strauss
India: Gavaskar, Navjot Sidhu, Sehwag
Pakistan: Anwar, Sohail
New Zealand: Wright
South Africa: Gary Kirsten, Gibbs, Smith
Sri Lanka: Jayasuriya, Attapattu
West Indies: Haynes, Greenidge, Gayle

2. Middle Order:

Australia: Mark Waugh, Seve Waugh, Allan Border, Ricky Ponting, Damien Martyn, Adam Gilchrist, Dean Jones
England: Gower, Thorpe
India: Amarnath, Vengsarkar, Azharuddin, Tendulkar, Dravid, Laxman, Ganguly
Pakistan: Miandad, Salim Malik, Inzamam, Mohammad Yousuf, Younis Khan
New Zealand: Martin Crowe
South Africa: Kallis, Cullinan
Sri Lanka: De Silva, Jayawardane, Sangakkara
Zimbabwe: Andy Flower
West Indies: Richards, Richardson, Lara, Chanderpaul

3. All Rounders: Imran, Botham, Kapil, Hadlee, Cairns, Pollock, Kallis, Flintoff, Akram.

4. Wicket Keepers: Healy, Gilchrist, Stewart, Russell, Mongia, Moin Khan, Latif, Ian Smith, Parore, Boucher,

Sangakkara, Dujon, Jaobs, Andy Flower,

5. Fast Bowlers:

Australia: McDermott, Hughes, McGrath, Gillespie, Lee
England: Botham, Gough, Caddick, Harmison, Hoggard, Flintoff
India: Kapil Dev, Srinath
Pakistan: Imran, Akram, Waqar, Akhthar
New Zealand: Hadlee, Cairns, Bond (??)
South Africa: Donald, Pollock, Ntini
Sri Lanka: Vaas
Zimbabwe: Streak
West Indies: Marshall, Ambrose, Walsh, Bishop

6. Spinners:

Australia: Warne, McGill
India: Kumble, Harbhajan
Pakistan: Qadir, Mushtaq, Saqlain
New Zealand: Vettori
Sri Lanka: Muralitharan
 

aussie tragic

International Vice-Captain
Can I suggest a voting approach of first having each position shortlisted to 5 players, which are then voted on.

e.g. First Opener: Shortlist votes may result in Sewag, Grennidge, Haynes, Haydon, Gavskar. When one has been selected, then the other 4 are included in the shortlisting vote process for second Opener (or maybe even # 3 as well).

Just a thought...
 

bagapath

International Captain
aussie tragic said:
Can I suggest a voting approach of first having each position shortlisted to 5 players, which are then voted on.

e.g. First Opener: Shortlist votes may result in Sewag, Grennidge, Haynes, Haydon, Gavskar. When one has been selected, then the other 4 are included in the shortlisting vote process for second Opener (or maybe even # 3 as well).

Just a thought...
Thats one way to do it. We can keep one opener aggressive and another steady if thats what we want. Or we can go for a left right combinaiton. I prefer one attacking batsman and one solid anchorman to open the innings. If that is alright, we will go for the anchorman first and start with a shortlist of five to go to poll. We will also look up at the stats from 86 onwards. I think some big names like gavaskar, richards, imran, border, botham, kapil and miandad wont make it to this team.
 

bagapath

International Captain
Here are two pools to choose openers from. Let us please remember that these definitions are broad and open for interpretation. We will start with five each from these pools and sttart the selection.

Attacking Opener: Slater, Hayden, Sehwag, Navjot Sidhu, Trescothick, Gibbs, Smith, Anwar, Jayasuriya, Greenidge, Gayle

Defensive Opener: Boon, Taylor, Atherton, Gooch, Vaughan, Gavaskar, Langer, Strauss, Wright, Gary Kirsten, Attapattu, Haynes
 

oz_fan

International Regular
Attacking opener: Hayden, Anwar, Greenidge, Sehwag, Trescothick
Defensive Opener: Taylor, Langer, Kirsten, Haynes, Gooch

I didn't include Gavaskar because he only played one or two years after 1986.
 

bagapath

International Captain
thedarkmullet said:
I think he might have been suggesting adding Mark Richardson as a New Zealand opener.
I got that. but didnt think mark deserved to be there. tooooooo slow. :) and then realized richie was missing. so plugged him in. :)
 

stumpski

International Captain
oz_fan said:
Attacking opener: Hayden, Anwar, Greenidge, Sehwag, Trescothick
Defensive Opener: Taylor, Langer, Kirsten, Haynes, Gooch

I didn't include Gavaskar because he only played one or two years after 1986.

Actually those shortlists include several players who 'peaked' well before 1986. As well as Gavaskar, Richards, Imran, Botham and Kapil Dev were all at their best around the period 1975-84. As I understand it we are really looking to select players from the 'modern' era here, so perhaps that group belongs to the 1966-85 side.
 

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