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Sight Screen

Monday, August 08, 2005

All time greatest team?

It's a perennial subject for beer bar/coffee table debate -- which was the greatest team of all time?
Viv Richards appears in no doubt, here, in this piece by Mathew Syed in the Times that I stumbled on when looking for Ashes content.
When asked to fuse the best players from the two towering teams of recent decades into one hypothetical super-team, he was equally uncompromising. “I would not drop any player from my West Indies team of the Eighties to make way for an Aussie from today’s side,” he said.
Would there be no place even for Shane Warne, who, like Richards, was voted by Wisden as one of the five best players of the 20th century? “No way, I would keep my four fast bowlers,” he said. When I suggested dropping Jeffrey Dujon for Adam Gilchrist, given that the latter had a significantly higher Test batting average, Richards shook his head with a measure of disdain.

Typical of Viv, that -- and it brings up a question in light of the Super Series between the Australian XI and the Rest of the World, later this year: Is a team just a collection of individuals (which implies you can pick 11 players from across the world and make it a World Team) or is there more to it than that? Do you have to play together as a team to become a team?

4 Comments:

  • That's what I always wondered!! These matches between a country and World XI do not serve any purpose. The national team will always have everything to gain from these matches, and every player will be much more motivated to play better. In contrast to this, the World XI has nothing to gain. Even if they beat this national team, it still does'nt serves any purpose. They play under a different Captain, a new 1 match coach and have absolutely no plans whatsoever.
    IMHO, these kind of stupidities should be banned.

    So Prem, how about some 'Lassi' now?
    Praji, lassi piyoge to 'fever' door bhagega... aur coffe piyoge to 'fever' pass aayega.

    By Blogger santa_from_NJ, at 17:51  

  • prem,

    a team, according to dictionary.com, in the context of games & sports, is only a group on the same side.

    but in the context of your post, i think even playing together doest really make you a team. many indian cricket teams of the recent past are good examples. they did play together representing india. but there were always friction between the team members (gavaskar vs kapil and so many others). which resulted in the team really not playing as a team. another example is the USA basketball team in the recent olympics. all the team members were highly talented, top 20 players in the NBA. but together they could not win a gold because they were playing for their own good and prestige.

    your thoughts?

    -hari

    By Blogger Hari, at 18:10  

  • It depends on the selection process for picking the best 11. It requires a very smart selection process which picks up players with complementary styles wherein the individual brilliance when combined together can create a potent force. Its not an impossible task, just that its difficult to achieve that kind of synergy from disparate entities.

    By Blogger sachin, at 18:10  

  • Santa,

    This super series may not mean much but it should be fun to watch. I think it will work better for the test matches than the one dayers.

    By Blogger Rishi Gajria, at 20:33  

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