Monday, 19 December 2011

My no.5+6 batsmen - (My favourite playing XI based on current players)...

So I'm onto my no.5 batsman for the team, I've gone with another specialist batsman.

Apart from my opener in Brendan McCullum, some might say my team isn't the most aggressive team out there, but I will stick with this man for my no.5 spot.

Mohammad Yousuf(Pakistan)

Mohammad Yousuf is one of the all time greats of cricket. Not many can compare with this man for grace and elegance when it comes to cricket strokes.

And no better innings come to mind for me then his 202 against England at Lords in 2006.
It was filled with every shot in the game, and it was one of the innings that made me fall in love with the game of cricket. His strokes looks so effortless and are a joy to watch. A player who has always answered the call for Pakistan but was given the push in March 2010 for the defeat of Pakistan in their tour of Australia. Then following Pakistan's horrible first test against England in 2010, he was asked to come back. He even had a go at T20i cricket during this return.

His stroke making ability even shone briefly through this shorter form of the game, where it would leave so many batsmen looking wild and off balanced, he even had the answers for the doubters in this form of the game. You can have your players who will swing at the hip for everything, but this wasn’t Yousuf, there still is room in T20 for graceful strokes, and this is something Yousuf has in abundance.

 One regret is that I've not had much of a chance to watch him in recent years, but for me he is one of four of the greatest players from the sub continent to have played the game.

Now comes times for my wicket-keeper. I wanted a specialist batsman for this position. And for me there is only one possible person for this job in modern day cricket.

Kumar Sangakkara(Sri Lanka)

Kumar Sangakkara is a very classy left hander, and to me Sri Lanka have suffered when he made the decision to drop the gloves in the test format. However he stills uses them for the ODI format, and to have a wicket-keeper who can bat, and who can bat well is vital.

Since the days of Rahul Dravid being asked to pick up the gloves by Ganguly to lengthen the batting order, and since the days of Adam Gilchrist turning the position into an art form. There has always been a need for a country to find a specialist wicket-keeping batsman. In these days there is no one better in my opinion than Kumar Sangakkara.

He's a gentleman on the field and is a very fair player. His cover drives are a joy to watch. In 2011 he also showed the world his wonderful use of words when he delivered a speech for the 2011 MCC Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey Lecture, which touched on some of the subjects close to his heart. None more frightening I'm sure then the terrorist attack on their bus in Pakistan.

He is no longer Captain of the Sri Lankan team, with that torch handed of toTillakaratne Dilshan, but his experience on the field is vital. And now in a world without Muttiah Muralitharan, where the team isn’t playing like the team of old. His need is more vital now than ever, when Sri Lanka must find their feet again. Kumar needs to be the one to stand up and show his batting prowess, and the qualities he has shown in the past that has won him so much respect from crick lovers the world over.


  1. would rather have dhoni at no.6

    bcoz sangakara nvr played at no.6 in odis ... he either opened or batted at no.3

    also in odis dhoni is the best wkt keeper batsman avg over 51 and SR 88 ....

    at no.5 someone like Kevin Pieterson, de villiars or Yuvraj who can score fast in middle overs n then towards the slog overs as well would be a good choice ...

  2. I'd look at Jayawardene for 5, and possibly another batsman for 6 - if you're prepared to put Sangakarra as the keeper, you should be prepared to use McCullum imo.
    Nice idea (Irish cricket blog), I have a soft spot for Ireland and would love to see them reach Test level.