Thursday, September 15, 2005

Cricket (Again)

I know he just captained the first England team to win the Ashes in 18 years, but can we have a shred of realism regarding how we consider Michael Vaughan, please? I'm not sure he's a brilliant captain in the first place, but that is a matter for another post.

To suggest that he should be included in the Rest of the World team to play Australia in the "Super Test", as this article does, is pure fantasy. He has been woefully out of form for the Ashes series; his average only remotely redeemed by his 166 in the Third Test, when he was lucky to be given as many chances by the Australians as he was. He cannot by any stretch of the imagination be considered one of the best players in world cricket at the moment.

If we are looking at the English batsmen who deserve a shot at inclusion, Andrew Strauss has to be top of the list. His first Test was played at number 4; he certainly isn't limited to being an opening batsman. In any case, there is a strong case for making him the opener in a world side anyway. But really, Vaughan, on batting form alone, isn't a guaranteed selection for any side in the world (short of Zimbabwe or Bangladesh). Let's not get totally deluded about the strength of our side just yet...