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The Greatest Test Team?


ICC yesterday released the results of the online poll that had fans voting for the greatest test team of all time.  The list features four Australians, four Indians, two West Indians and one Pakistani.  And not one Englishman finds himself on the list.  The players who made it are,



 




ICC's Greatest Test XI



Virender Sehwag



Sunil Gavaskar



Donald Bradman



Sachin Tendulkar



Brian Lara



Kapil Dev



Adam Gilchrist (wk)



Shane Warne



Wasim Akram



Curtly Ambrose



Glenn McGrath


 


Now this list is selected by the fans after a voting process. The poll received more than 250,000 votes and as expected the results show varying demographic of the electorate.  However with some true legends such as Jack Hobbs, Viv Richards and Gary Sobers left out, one can assume that this truly isn't the world's greatest test team.  So now you ask me then what was my team?  Well my team though not conventional was a far better one than this even if I did leave out Brian Lara and Gary Sobers.  I'm sure the English reader would be happy to see that both my openers wore the three lions.


 



My Greatest Test XI





Click to enlarge the picture


My list consists of two Englishmen, five Australians, two West Indians, a Indian and a Kiwi.  So we both have 5 players in common so definitely the places of Don Bradman, Sachin Tendulkar, Shane Warne, Adam Gilchrist and Glenn McGrath is undisputed.  It's the others that worry me.  I can understand Gary Sobers for my Richard Hadlee but Kapil Dev?  Wasim Akram for Denis Lillee makes sense and I think Ambrose for the whispering death is also acceptable.  However I still maintain Lillee and Holding at their prime were the best!  The place for Lara and Richards can only be chosen by a coin toss as they are both equally good.  What I can't understand however is Sehwag over someone the quality of Jack Hobbs.  Sehwag is still not into the legendary strata.  Gavaskar over Sutcliffe might be seen as acceptable and I probably can live with that.  So the real greatest test XI should be,



 




The merger of ICC's and My Greatest Test XI



Jack Hobbs



Sunil Gavaskar




Donald Bradman





Sachin Tendulkar





Brian Lara/ Viv Richards





Gary Sobers/ Richard Hadlee





Adam Gilchrist (wk)





Shane Warne





Wasim Akram





Curtly Ambrose





Glenn McGrath




 




According to this we have one Englishman, two Indians, four Aussies, three (four if Sobers is included) West Indian players and one Pakistani (and one Kiwi if Sir Hadlee is chosen).  So now we have a universal mix of players.  If you noticed in all the three lists, the players who find themselves in the lists belong to a particular period when their team was the best.  The Bradman of the 30s and 40s, the West Indian players of the 70s and 80s, the Australian players of 90s and early 2000s and the Indian players of the latter 2000 who feature in the list, prove this.  The occasional player such as Hadlee and Akram do sneak in but still the core remains players who have been part of the greatest team during their respective eras.  So by looking at the lack of English players it's not difficult to come to the conclusion that the English have never dominated the game.  Likewise for the newer countries like Sri Lanka and South Africa who still are competing for the highest spot.



 




 




So as expected all three lists above hold some truth, and the most accepted truth is the common overlap of all these lists.  With the lists being not all that reliable I think the best would be to take the best players from the dominant team in each era.  So that list then would be,




 




According to the age wise classification - The Greatest Test XI




 



Virender Sehwag



Jack Hobbs







Donald Bradman





Sachin Tendulkar





Viv Richards



Gary Sobers





Adam Gilchrist (wk)





Shane Warne





Micheal Holding





Curtly Ambrose





Glenn McGrath



 



This list is probably the closest to the greatest XI, but the drawback in this is that players like Gavaskar and Akram who weren't part of the dominant team during their era miss out.  While others such as Sehwag who still is not fully there at the top level makes it.  By looking at the repeated names we can say for certain that players such as Bradman, Tendulkar, Warne, Gilchrist and McGrath are indispensable and should be certainly part of a all time greatest test XI.  If they happen to be missing, then the list sadly is not the greatest test team.  Whatever the case, choosing a list of the greatest XI is no easy task and there's definitely more than one greatest XI, all depending on your perception.


 




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Latest comments

That was fantastic Team....
Amshi1989 on 15 Sep 2011, 01:24 AM
amazing team
Ashish-Uchil on 08 Sep 2011, 07:12 AM
Greatest Test Team for ever....!!
kiran0520 on 26 Aug 2011, 06:05 AM
Awesome Team......!!!!!
kiran0520 on 19 Aug 2011, 07:54 AM
It will be one of the greatest team ever.
shriram-jagadeesan on 24 Jul 2011, 06:11 PM
Sir Viv Richards and Sir Gary Sobers are missing in the list. rest of the team are good.
rameshg on 23 Jul 2011, 09:41 AM
Maybe a few names are missing in this list because u cannot accommodate every1 in this list. But more or less a good choice.
aka on 23 Jul 2011, 09:36 AM
@RoyalShan,

Well Sehwag does appear in the last and final list which is probably the closest if not the exact list. And yes I prefer Holding over Ambrose, but overall opinion is that Ambrose is better. I think that we all can agree on 6 players while the next 5 players in the list is all upto our opinions...
Poshin on 21 Jul 2011, 06:14 AM
Well ya but then how can u have him in place of a Don Bradman or a Brian Lara or a S Tendulkar??Thts y I did mention Dravid would be on my second list read my bottom posts..:)Even Anil Kumble for that matter
RoyalShaan on 21 Jul 2011, 04:58 AM
dravid is gonna be the 2nd highest scorer in tests........how can u ignore him?????
anoop-s on 21 Jul 2011, 04:55 AM
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