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So who is number 1 right now? (Feb 2010)

Which is your number 1 Test team in world cricket right now


  • Total voters
    44
  • Poll closed .

Sir Alex

Banned
Yes, that is while facing an Australian team struggling to re define its identity post the warne, mgrath era. Also facing a srilankan team with a struggling murali and mendis. A South African squad which has been incredibly inconsistent. Bangladesh hardly counts.
The remaining teams are West Indies and Pakistan who are at best just a rung above Bangladesh (at the moment), England (whom India beat both Home and Away), New Zealand (beat them as well). A team can only beat the opponent that turns up and India have done that in the last 2 years.

Indian bowling some serious flaws, apart from Zaheer Khan, India do not have another class bowler, Harbajhan is a good bowler and I quite like him but I wouldnt put him up there with Kumble. They need to address this bowling problem and somehow find a couple of more strike pace or spinning options.

I cannot recall a phase where one test side was the no 1 team in the world for an extended period of time that didnt have menacing intimidating strike bowlers.

It is quite sad actually because their batting line up seems very balanced and one which can adapt and perform in all conditions.

I think at the end of the day, you have to consider the fact that Australia and South Africa over the past 2 years have been trying to find their feet while India has consistently building up this squad for the past 5 years or more and have been playing upto their potential.
You are spot on there mate. Nobody except the most hardcore blind Indian fan thinks this is a world beating side like Australia of the early 00s or West Indies of the 80s. That is just being delusional. This side however, is the better among the best today, again, not by a great margin, but by a definite margin nevertheless.

I hope Sreesanth really takes up the mantle from Zaheer in the next two years because he looks the one most close to World Class among the new crop and certainly is a better bet than Ishant, who is sometimes unfairly criticised. He is all of 20 ffs.

Yes, but human initiative involves more than just mathematical models.
Mathematical models are not 100% flawless but once formulated they are objective and based on hard numbers. Human initiative as you intended (or that I think you intended) involve a lot of subjectivity and hence consensus is not possible.

There's a lot of problems with that approach. For example, the team that Australia lost to in England was significantly better than the team South Africa beat the summer before, and that team was in turn better than the team that lost to India in 2007. On the other hand, the Australian side that beat India at home was much better than that which lost to South Africa the year after. How are you going to decipher all of that?

On top of that, the approach neglects two key factors. Firstly, fitness. Players that can play every game are better than players who get injured a lot. There's no two ways about it. Secondly, DEPTHHH. Australia can bring in Ben Hilfenhaus and Doug Bollinger when Stuart Clark and Brett Lee break down. When Zaheer breaks down India have to spin the wheel of mediocrity (copyright SS) to find a replacement. That's something Australia have over India, and by factoring in notable absences, you're unfairly discounting it.
Those are all excellent points. However I slightly disagree

1. Fitness - I agree that no matter what the talent is, if a player constantly gets injured then he is more of a liability than an asset to the team. However in this case, Zaheer was injured "during" the test match, and replacement was impossible under the laws. We have all seen much better teams getting jolted by such "sudden" injuries, perhaps the best being McGrath getting injured ahead of Edgbastion 2005 and Australia going on to lose the test match (eventually the series as well!). No matter how great the team is, it is impossible to find adequate replacements for a pivotal resource unless there is a minimum time period available to do so.

2. Depth - Carrying on from the point above, Dravid's injury is a classic case in this. Apparently the "successor", Vijay, clearly failed to step into his shoes and that indeed exposed a problem in that particular succession plan. However, the example that you mentioned, is again not appropriate because of the same reasons I mentioned above. No matter how 'strong' the bench strength is, great players are not immediately substitutable, as Ashes 2005 demonstrated clearly, and Australia since 2007 too. You mentioned Dougie Bollinger and Ben Hilfenhaus, but I don't think they are tested enough to say they are worthy replacements for Brett Lee and Clark. Beating substandard batting lineups at home is easier but the real challenge is when it involves unfavorable conditions/strong opponents.

To be fair, until India's bowling costs it a series, criticisms of their attack are on paper only.

Most definitely Australia and SA in general have better attacks (SA not by as much as people make out though). But India win with what they've got. That's a good thing.
Agree wholeheartedly with this.
 

Sir Alex

Banned
They were denied the last time and were the better team in 2004. They have been better than any other team at touring Australia.
True. I think there is much better chance of India beating Australia in Australia than Australia beating India in India. It comes down to the irritating A > B, B > C so A > C which has been disproven in the last few years. Nobody is a Bolt like No. 1 today in world cricket, but India just has the slight advantage.
 

Ikki

Hall of Fame Member
True. I think there is much better chance of India beating Australia in Australia than Australia beating India in India. It comes down to the irritating A > B, B > C so A > C which has been disproven in the last few years. Nobody is a Bolt like No. 1 today in world cricket, but India just has the slight advantage.
The way the Australian attack looks right now I doubt it. We'll know more about them after the Ashes but, without jest, I wouldn't be surprised if England lose the series with 0 Tests won - whether that be 2-0, 3-0, 4-0 or ...:ph34r:
 

Sir Alex

Banned
The way the Australian attack looks right now I doubt it. We'll know more about them after the Ashes but, without jest, I wouldn't be surprised if England lose the series with 0 Tests won - whether that be 2-0, 3-0, 4-0 or ...:ph34r:
:p

With this batting lineup and bolstered by Dravid, I cannot see Australian pacers having enough firepower to hold them even in Australian pitches. The best bet will be to make NZ 2002 type of pitches but with the current Australian batting lineup that would be a lottery as well. Anyway all these are speculation. Who knows how it will turn out in the next 2 years when India tour Australia?
 

GIMH

Norwood's on Fire
The way the Australian attack looks right now I doubt it. We'll know more about them after the Ashes but, without jest, I wouldn't be surprised if England lose the series with 0 Tests won - whether that be 2-0, 3-0, 4-0 or ...:ph34r:
Broad will hand you guys your asses once again, we ain't giving the urn up this time :ph34r:
 

pasag

RTDAS
:p

With this batting lineup and bolstered by Dravid, I cannot see Australian pacers having enough firepower to hold them even in Australian pitches. The best bet will be to make NZ 2002 type of pitches but with the current Australian batting lineup that would be a lottery as well. Anyway all these are speculation. Who knows how it will turn out in the next 2 years when India tour Australia?
The same batting lineup that could only manage 250 odd vs Bangladesh :ph34r:
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
Mathematical models are not 100% flawless but once formulated they are objective and based on hard numbers. Human initiative as you intended (or that I think you intended) involve a lot of subjectivity and hence consensus is not possible.
You won't get consensus that any mathematical model is remotely fit to rank teams at any given time, either, because of the fact that just about any one you choose (and there are many options) have their flaws.

Each individual must decide for himself - there will be lots of consensus but never anywhere near 100%. Which is why ambiguity is required - the idea that there must always be a "best" team is plain wrong IMO.
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
Ultimate challenge for other teams maybe, but IMO the toughest opponents at home over the last 20 years or so has easily been OZ
Oh fo' sho', Australia haven't been genuinely and comprehensively outplayed at home since 1988/89, but Australia's home impregnability has extended to away, often, as well.

With India it hasn't.
 

Sir Alex

Banned
You won't get consensus that any mathematical model is remotely fit to rank teams at any given time, either, because of the fact that just about any one you choose (and there are many options) have their flaws.

Each individual must decide for himself - there will be lots of consensus but never anywhere near 100%. Which is why ambiguity is required - the idea that there must always be a "best" team is plain wrong IMO.
I think there was enough consensus on the new model of rankings till India became No.1 :p
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
I couldn't really care less TBH, I've always hated this ridiculous current ranking system and in fact anything which is rolling will always have the fault of failing to take into account the start and end of eras (given that different teams experience different eras).

Whether there is bias among some people who don't want India to be ranked #1 isn't my concern.
 

social

Hall of Fame Member
SA have lost 5/10 tests, won just 3 and havent won a test series for more than a year so no way are they the second best team in the world ON PAPER

ON PAPER, Oz look the best but that is irrelevant

India are deservedly ranked no. 1 based on performances and until they are beaten, they should stay there IMO
 

Sir Alex

Banned
I couldn't really care less TBH, I've always hated this ridiculous current ranking system and in fact anything which is rolling will always have the fault of failing to take into account the start and end of eras (given that different teams experience different eras).

Whether there is bias among some people who don't want India to be ranked #1 isn't my concern.
What exactly is ridiculous about the ranking system and how do you propose to amend those?
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
I don't propose to amend anything - as I say, I simply propose to have no ranking system or championship at all. The purpose it serves isn't a purpose worth serving IMO.

The flaws are insoluble. You will never get a ranking system that does what some people want done - tells you unequivocally which team is "best". Because sometimes there is no "best".
 

social

Hall of Fame Member
Oh fo' sho', Australia haven't been genuinely and comprehensively outplayed at home since 1988/89, but Australia's home impregnability has extended to away, often, as well.

With India it hasn't.
When was the last time India beat a half-decent side away

I'm tempted to say "never" but might be proven wrong by a historian
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
Certainly did so in England in 2007, as I mentioned not so long ago. Before that, you'd probably have to go back to England in 1971, much as that victory has been described, not entirely inaccurately, as a fluke.
 

Pratters

Cricket, Lovely Cricket
:p

With this batting lineup and bolstered by Dravid, I cannot see Australian pacers having enough firepower to hold them even in Australian pitches. The best bet will be to make NZ 2002 type of pitches but with the current Australian batting lineup that would be a lottery as well. Anyway all these are speculation. Who knows how it will turn out in the next 2 years when India tour Australia?
Will be one of Sachin's last series or could be his last. Can't wait to watch it. Will be epic. India to win (as I have said before every Indian tour of Australia 1999 onwards. :ph34r:)
 

social

Hall of Fame Member
Certainly did so in England in 2007, as I mentioned not so long ago. Before that, you'd probably have to go back to England in 1971, much as that victory has been described, not entirely inaccurately, as a fluke.
2007?

Are you serious?

Eng had a largely 3rd string bowling attack on the park and India still needed the help of the weather to win

That wasnt a win, it was a robbery!
 

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