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Tuesday, December 10, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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Richards, Sobers, Marshall in Wisden’s best
LONDON— Australia great Don Bradman was named captain on Wednesday of an all-time Test World XI to mark the 150th anniversary of Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack.
Although Bradman played his last Test in 1948, no batsman before or since has come anywhere near his staggering Test batting average of 99.94.
Also included is his compatriot Shane Warne, who during the 1990s established himself as arguably the greatest legspinner cricket has known.
Given that it is a UK-based publication built around the events of the previous English season, albeit one now encompassing the whole of senior international cricket, it is perhaps unsurprising there are four England players in the side.
W.G. Grace, the 19th century star who invented the fundamentals of batting, opening great Jack Hobbs, wicketkeeper Alan Knott, a mainstay of England teams of the 1970s and Sydney Barnes, a master of both swing and spin and reckoned by many to have been England’s greatest bowler of all time, make it into the side.
West Indies provide three players in Vivian Richards, widely regarded as the best batsman of his generation, Garfield Sobers, frequently referred to as the greatest allrounder cricket has known and Malcolm Marshall, viewed as arguably the best in a long line of top-class Caribbean fast bowlers.
India provide one player in the soon-to-retire Sachin Tendulkar, Test cricket’s leading run scorer of all-time, which would probably settle a long time debate as to whether Tendular was worth more to the game than his contemporary Brian Lara, of the West Indies.
The team is completed by Pakistan’s Wasim Akram, long esteemed as the best left-arm fast bowler cricket has known.
Hobbs, Bradman, Richards, Sobers and Warne were named as Wisden’s five players of the 20th Century in 2000.
WISDEN WORLD XI
1. Jack Hobbs (England, Wisden Cricketer of the Year 1909) 61 Tests, 5,410 runs at 56.94
2. WG Grace (England, CY 1896) 22 Tests, 1,098 runs at 32.29
3. Don Bradman (Australia, CY 1931, capt) 52 Tests, 6,996 runs at 99.94)
4. Sachin Tendulkar (India, CY 1997) 198 Tests, 15,837 runs at 53.86
5. Vivian Richards (West Indies, CY 1977) 121 Tests, 8,540 runs at 50.23
6. Garry Sobers (West Indies, CY 1964) 93 Tests, 8,032 runs at 57.78, 235 wickets at 34.03
7. Alan Knott (England, CY 1970, wkt) 95 Tests, 4,389 runs at 32.75, 250 catches, 19 stumpings
8. Wasim Akram (Pakistan, CY 1993) 104 Tests, 414 wickets at 23.62
9. Shane Warne (Australia, CY 1994) 145 Tests, 708 wickets at 25.41
10. Malcolm Marshall (West Indies, CY 1983) 81 Tests, 376 wickets at 20.94
11. Sydney Barnes (England, CY 1910) 27 Tests, 189 wickets at 16.43.
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