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The Battle of the Englishmen


Ok, this battle has started in "the battle of the cricketers" thread, but a couple of posters have suggested it's being missed by people, so I'm now starting a thread of its very own.

Briefly, 32 players who have appeared for England in Tests and/or ODIs have been nominated (sorry if you missed out; but you snooze, you lose :p) & drawn at random to face each other. You then vote on who you think is the superior player & (maybe) give your reasons for doing so. After 24 hours we have a winner. Simple, but beautiful I'm sure you'll agree.

The 32 players to make the cut are:

1) WG Grace
2) CB Fry
3) KS Ranjitsinjhi
4) SF Barnes
5) Wifred Rhodes
6) Jack Hobbs
7) Herbert Sutcliffe
8) Douglas Jardine
9) Wally Hammond
10) Harold Larwood
11) Les Ames
12) Sir Leonard Hutton
13) Denis Compton
14) Alec Bedser
15) Jim Laker
16) Frank Tyson
17) Brian Statham
18) Ken Barrington
19) Fred Trueman
20) Colin Cowdrey
21) Ted Dexter
22) Geoffrey Boycott
23) Derek Underwood
24) Alan Knott
25) Bob Willis
26) Graham Gooch
27) Allan Lamb
28) Ian Botham
29) David Gower
30) Nasser Hussain
31) Darren Gough
32) Andrew Flintoff

The first battle has already begun in the other thread, but here again for your convenience are the combatants:

Battle of the Englishmen: Round1, Battle 1

CB Fry
26 tests, 1223 runs @ 32.18 (2 centuries, 7 half-centuries)


Sir Alec Bedser
51 tests, 714 runs @ 12.75 (1 half-century), 236 wickets @ 24.89 (5 wickets in an innings 15 times, 10 wickets in a match 5 times)

EDIT: currently 3-2 to Bedser.
Last edited:


International Captain
Hmmm... difficult to compare such different players. Bit like asking who's the better bowler, McGrath or Murali? CB Fry was a tremendous all-round sportsman but Bedser reallly carried England's attack after the war, until the appearance of Trueman and Tyson in the mid-50s, so, from a purely cricketing viewpoint -



Ok, time is just about up. Charles Burgess Fry may arguably be the finest all-round sportsman we've ever produced, but the rather more prosaic appeal of Sir Alec's unerringly accurate medium pace carries him through 10-2.

Next up a battle that seems to be cut-and-dried for mine, but I wonder what factors people may take into account when casting their votes. I won't say too much as I don't want to unduly influence the voting (which, of course, makes the rather large assumption people actually give a flying monkey bollock what I say! :p).

Battle of the Englishmen: Round1, Battle 2

Nasser Hussain
96 tests, 5764 runs @ 37.18 (14 centuries, 33 half-centuries)
88 ODIs, 2332 runs @ 30.28, SR 66.99 (1 century, 16 half-centuries)


Geoffrey Boycott
108 tests, 8114 runs @ 47.73 (22 centuries, 42 half-centuries), 7 wickets @ 54.57
36 ODIs, 1082 runs @ 36.06, SR 53.56 (1 century, 9 half-centuries), 5 wickets @ 21.00, ER 3.75



International 12th Man
Closer than some may think at first IMHO. Boycott was obviously the superior player, but Hussain is one of England's best ever captains (perhaps only Jardine and Brearly ahead of him for me) and along with Fletcher the man most responsible for ending our shockingly awful run in the 90s.

But still, have to give the to Boycs. If he hadn't 'retired' in the mid-70s for a few years he would have cracked 10,000 runs easily and probably averaged even more.



U19 Captain
Looks simple on paper but when looked at closer it's a tough call.

Obviously Boycott is an utter legend and one of the finest openers to ever grace test cricket.

Hussain though is one of the main men responsible for England fighting back in test cricket. He made us hard to beat again, gave the team back their pride and pulled off some fantastic series wins, away in Pakistan, Sri Lanka, the home series against the West Indies. He got the ball rolling and Vaughany kept it going. Not to mention he was a pretty good batsman. Also one of my favourite moments in test cricket was his last ever game at Lords against New Zealand when he hit a fantastic century to win the game for us.

Hussain for me.


Cricket Web: All-Time Legend
Boycott, better average in both forms and even took some wickets that i didn't know about.


Cricket Web: All-Time Legend
Boycott, better average in both forms and even took some wickets that i didn't know about.


Hall of Fame Member
superkingdave said:
much as it pains me to vote for a Yorkshi*eman, Boycott
you don't have to, even though he is the better bat, i'll pick Hussain because he made England a good side out of the depths of the 90's & now Vaughan & co have prospered.