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Old 15th August 2013, 20:09   #1
Stevieb15
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World class England cricketers

I'm 58, so born in 1955, my real informed interest in cricket probably didn't start until I was 15/16 and I've been discussing with my son how many truly world class cricketers I've seen play for England in that time.
So I've come up with, Boycott, Gooch, Broad, Gower, Botham, Snow, Underwood, Knott, Swann and possibly Willis, Cook and Anderson.
Any thoughts?
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Old 15th August 2013, 20:26   #2
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Hi, Steve. I'm 9 years younger but I've seen everyone you've listed and can't think of any omissions from 1970-74.

I guess much depends on one's definition of 'world class' - ie does it mean a player of a certain unwritten excellence over an extended period, or that they'd merit a place in a World XI at some point in their career? If it's the latter, then peak era Tony Greig might attract some support. Similarly, it might be argued that Graham Dilley and Simon Jones were, for a very brief time, amongst the world's premier quicks.

But I like your list and would possibly only hesitate over Chris Broad, think about Thorpe and definitely add Pietersen. I would unquestionably rate Bob Taylor as a world class 'keeper too.
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Old 15th August 2013, 20:39   #3
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I guess you mean Stuart Broad. Deadly at times but sometimes anonymous. Not quite in the same league yet I think.
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Old 15th August 2013, 20:45   #4
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It does depend on how you define world-class. Vaughan for example was for a while the best batsman on the planet. I like to think of 'great' players being those who perform in a way that you'll tell your grandkids about. Thorpe, Flintoff, Trescothick, Swann, Prior and Pietersen would probably be in that bracket for me since I started watching in the late 90s.
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Old 15th August 2013, 21:37   #5
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Similar watching era to mine..makes you think. Not that many really top players for such a time span..lots of good ones but few great ones. All relative anyway. Maybe Lamb as well. Amiss not far off. An interesting list would be failed great players..like Hick...Prior??
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Old 15th August 2013, 21:46   #6
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I would be a tad less generous and restrict to Boycott, Gooch, Gower, Pieteresen, Botham, Flintoff, Underwood and Willis.

Great players have be outstanding as opposed to simply being very good.
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Old 15th August 2013, 21:51   #7
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Quote:
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I would be a tad less generous and restrict to Boycott, Gooch, Gower, Pieteresen, Botham, Flintoff, Underwood and Willis.

Great players have be outstanding as opposed to simply being very good.
On that basis, you'd have to include Knott.
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Old 15th August 2013, 22:31   #8
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I guess you mean Stuart Broad. Deadly at times but sometimes anonymous. Not quite in the same league yet I think.
Pretty sure he means Chris Broad, although I think he's a questionable inclusion too.
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Old 15th August 2013, 22:37   #9
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I would be a tad less generous and restrict to Boycott, Gooch, Gower, Pieteresen, Botham, Flintoff, Underwood and Willis.

Great players have be outstanding as opposed to simply being very good.
Flintoff is nowhere in the same league as Botham.
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Old 15th August 2013, 22:52   #10
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Flintoff is nowhere in the same league as Botham.
Botham 33.5 / 28.4
Flintoff 31.8 / 32.8

The bowling disparity is pretty big.
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Old 15th August 2013, 23:26   #11
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Botham 33.5 / 28.4
Flintoff 31.8 / 32.8

The bowling disparity is pretty big.
Botham: 27 5w/ 14 centuries
Flintoff: 3 5w/ 5 centuries

And Botham tailed off badly towards the end of his career, but if you look at 78 Tests (the same number Flintoff played) Botham still averaged 36.33 with the bat and 26.52 with the ball.
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Old 16th August 2013, 04:48   #12
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I would be a tad less generous and restrict to Boycott, Gooch, Gower, Pieteresen, Botham, Flintoff, Underwood and Willis.

Great players have be outstanding as opposed to simply being very good.
Agree with that. We haven't had many. Swann probably on the fringes, Knott should be in there, but there's not many more. Gough, perhaps?
We've had many very good players, some who touched world class all too briefly - Vaughan, Harmison. But I think the names above are the only ones who could genuinely be listed along the worlds best of all time.

What nation would have the most over that time frame?

West Indies? Garner, Marshall, Holding, Sobers, Richards, Greenidge, Lara, Chanderpaul, Walsh, Ambrose etc.

Australia? Border, Lillee, Marsh, Chappell, Warne, McGrath, Ponting, Hayden, Waugh, Gilchrist etc.
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Old 16th August 2013, 06:33   #13
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What nation would have the most over that time frame?

West Indies? Garner, Marshall, Holding, Sobers, Richards, Greenidge, Lara, Chanderpaul, Walsh, Ambrose etc.
Lloyd and Roberts. Possibly Gibbs, Kanhai & Dujon.
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Old 16th August 2013, 06:44   #14
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You would have to include Cook and Pietersen from the current crop of players through sheer weight of runs. They would be automatic picks for a current World test match lineup which ought to be one of the criteria.
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Old 16th August 2013, 08:23   #15
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Botham: 27 5w/ 14 centuries
Flintoff: 3 5w/ 5 centuries

And Botham tailed off badly towards the end of his career, but if you look at 78 Tests (the same number Flintoff played) Botham still averaged 36.33 with the bat and 26.52 with the ball.
One thing going for Fred is that his stand-out performance came against the dominant side of his era whereas Botham had a pretty miserable time against the West Indies. Otherwise tend to agree.
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Old 16th August 2013, 08:36   #16
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Flintoff is nowhere in the same league as Botham.
True but that doesn't necessarily stop him from being world class.
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Old 16th August 2013, 08:58   #17
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You would have to include Cook and Pietersen from the current crop of players through sheer weight of runs. They would be automatic picks for a current World test match lineup which ought to be one of the criteria.
I think it does, yeah. The one cautionary point I would make is that it's arguably harder for contemporary English players to 'make' that side than it would have been in previous eras when there were less top class Test sides and players around.

It's also interesting to consider how many of the contenders from the last 45 years would be genuine candidates for an All Time England XI (or maybe a squad of 15).
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Old 16th August 2013, 09:44   #18
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http://www.cricketcountry.com/cricke...p-tracks/27629

I've just stumbled across an article on Derek Underwood. I wonder if Summer of 77 has already seen this?
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Old 16th August 2013, 10:02   #19
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http://www.cricketcountry.com/cricke...p-tracks/27629

I've just stumbled across an article on Derek Underwood. I wonder if Summer of 77 has already seen this?
No, I hadn't Chin, so thank you very much.

I'm pleased that the article makes the point that, whilst being a terror on damp wickets, Deadly was far from a one-trick pony. The Ashes Test referred to would have been the Old Trafford match in 1977 when, on a dry turner, Underwood took 6 for about 60 to put England 1-0 up in the series. His battle with Greg Chappell, who made over half of Australia's score, was epic and ended when the Aussie dragged on the one short ball Deadly served up all day. Several months earlier, on those bone dry Indian pitches, he'd taken 29 wickets at below 18, outbowling the much vaunted home quartet of twirlers and nipping Gavaskar out 5 times. I don't expect ever to see a more relentlessly accurate bowler; heaven knows how many wickets he'd have ended up with had DRS been around.

I have a framed print of that 1968 Oval scene adorning the wall of my cricket room at home, and it's signed by the great man himself.
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Old 16th August 2013, 10:06   #20
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True but that doesn't necessarily stop him from being world class.
Flintoff was genuinely world class only for about two years, 2004 & 2005, and I feel that is a bit too short to be called a true great.
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