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Player selector relations can improve - Chappell

Daniel Brettig

June 17, 2011

Comments: 42 | Text size: A | A

Ricky Ponting has a word with Greg Chappell, Brisbane, November 22, 2010
"The players are always saying they'd like open and honest appraisals of where they're at" © Getty Images
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Australia's selectors agree that communications between the national panel and the players it chooses, for national contracts and teams, are not what they should be.

In the aftermath of the Simon Katich episode, the selectors have refused to comment publicly again until the chairman Andrew Hilditch names the squads for the tour of Sri Lanka in July. But last month Greg Chappell told ESPNcricinfo that the lines of inquiry to the selectors, and their feedback to players, could be improved.

"I think it's in a good place. Can it be in a better place? Probably," Chappell said in a feature interview. "You're always looking to improve those relations, and particularly the communications. Most players like to know where they stand.

"Some of the more established perhaps feel pretty confident and comfortable with where they're at, but there might be players on the fringe of the team or just new to the surroundings who probably need a bit more comfort and discussion about the position, the role and all the expectations.

"The players are always saying they'd like open and honest appraisals of where they're at. Trying to achieve that is a constant exercise, but receiving bad news is never easy, delivering bad news is never easy. The chairman of selectors is the one who has to deliver that news and it isn't always well received, obviously."

Chappell also noted that the selection process had not changed much at all in the time between his first stint as a selector that ended in 1988 and the present day, even though the game around it had changed irrevocably.

"It's very different in that we have professional first-class cricket now as opposed to the 80s, when I was originally involved," he said. "Being a full-time selector obviously makes it different. There's a few more layers in the system these days, and my role on the national selection panel has a very large youth component to it.

"I am full-time and I am working with people in the states and the Centre of Excellence. There's a bit more depth to it and a bit more day-to-day responsibility than just turning up to selection meetings and picking teams. But the process hasn't changed that much."

Australian cricket's structure for the 2011-12 season is being changed significantly again by the expansion of the Twenty20 competition and its eight newly-manufactured teams. Chappell admitted that T20 did run the risk of diverting focus from the development of the national team.

"Yes, it can (divert focus). I think Twenty20 is good; the changes to the Big Bash League have the potential to be very positive for Australian cricket. Dealing with the challenges that it presents will be important at many levels - at a state level and at the national level," Chappell said. "Being an employee of CA, and a member of the NSP, I have a focus on Australian cricket.

"There's no doubt that the money available with Big Bash leading into the Champions League means that the franchises, the states as owners of the franchises, have some focus in that area, which just means that all our other competitions and how they are run… the focus on those competitions is going to be even more important than in the past."

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by Meety on (June 20, 2011, 2:29 GMT)

@5wombats - great comedy re "...THAT was the mistake that cost Aus the 2009 and 2010/11 Ashes..." - apart from the fact that you are more or less saying that Oz should of won those series with better selection policies, 2009 Ashes is a ridiculous series to include in the Katich/Ponting debate. Whilst England did very well in most of the key moments in that series, statistically they were inferior to Oz in that series. Not selecting a spinner in the final test is THE MAIN reason why the Ashes were surrendered. Other non Ponting reasons, McGrath & Warne retired after 06/07, we technically had Warne covered with McGill who got injured & never recovered even though he could of played another 2 to 5yrs. Also McGrath should theoretically been covered by a pace attack that injury free would of been Lee, Clark & Johnson. MJ would of been nurtured under Stuey & Binga & not thrust into the spearhead role. Clark & Lee were not fully fit circa 2009.

Posted by fazald on (June 19, 2011, 13:04 GMT)

Popcorn your allegations about Doug Bollinger & Michael Hussey opting to play in the IPL in South Africa during the test series against India is not correct. You will be shocked to hear this. In fact Boulinger & Hussey wanted to return to join the squad in India befor the IPL finals but were told by either Sutherland or Hilditch to complete their assignment with Chenai Super Kings who were in the finals before they returned to India.As a result they arrived only a day or two before the first test & hardly had anytime to acclimatise to the Indian conditions & were already too tired.Boulinger broke down halfway through that series & had to return home.India only just managed to win the third test by one wicket to clinch the series 2-1. Another incident where our selectors handed over victory to the opposition on a platter was in the final ashes test in England in 2009 by dropping Hauritz on a turning wicket & losing the ashes 2-1. They should take the blame for both series defeats.

Posted by farkin on (June 19, 2011, 9:01 GMT)

don't for get this man told his brother to bowl under arm

Posted by   on (June 19, 2011, 6:54 GMT)

@5wombats don't know if you read the comments of Bryce McGain during the week regarding how the national side be chosen but basically his argument was that there shouldn't be any youth policies or rebuilding cycles like the AFL or NRL and that players should be picked based purely on form even if it means that there's a side full of 37 year olds. Apart from sounding like a bitter and washed up has-been who was an average spinner I'm very glad that he isn't a selector because it is that type of short-sightedness that has made the downfall of this Australia team worse.

The inconsistencies of the selectors decisions hasn't helped and while I don't want to sound like a whinging Victorian I still don't understand why Hodge was dropped on a 'technique' issue whereas Michael "I like to hit the ball in the air constantly" Clarke gets reprieve after reprieve. If you're going to judge players harshly based on some technical issue then apply it across the board and not just selectively.

Posted by   on (June 19, 2011, 6:38 GMT)

@ Praxis your comments regarding the obsession with finding another Warne are spot on. Correct me if I'm wrong but since Warne retired I think we've had no less than 20 different spinners come in and out of the side. What for? There's no point playing a spinner just for the sake of 'team balance' if he is nothing but cannon fodder even in the subcontinent because you would be better off picking 4 decent fast bowlers instead. @Barnesy4444 those players you mentioned had good careers but being able to identify, nurture develop talent are completely different to playing the game.

Posted by hyclass on (June 19, 2011, 1:35 GMT)

I have a low regard for Chappell.In charge of Sth Aust,he failed.In charge of India,he failed.In charge of Future Leagues,he introduced age and over limits that badly weakened the competition and have been revoked.He obsesses over youth and impugnes the Shield Comp.Here is a list of players with 1st class average followed by test average showing why,over time,averages are THE BEST selection guide: Watson-FC-46.76 TEST-41.55,BWL-FC-28.46-TEST-31.41, Hughes-FC-50.79-TEST-39.55, Katich-FC-53.31-TEST-45.03, Ponting-FC-55.98-TEST-53.51, Clarke-FC-44.61-TEST-44.69, Hussey-FC-52.47-51.09, North-FC-42.66-TEST-35.48, Haddin-FC-40.80-TEST-39.68, Smith-FC-42.11-TEST-28.77,BWL-FC-48.17-TEST-73.33, Johnson-FC-23.89-TEST-22.15,BWL-FC-30.5-TEST-29.71, Siddle-FC-28.18-TEST-32.1, Hilfenhaus-FC-29.93-TEST-34.61, Doherty-FC-47.73-TEST-102, Krezja-FC-47.85,43.23, Hayden-FC-52.57-TEST-50.7, Gilchrist-FC-44.16-TEST-47.60, Langer-FC-50.23-TEST-45.27, Martyn-FC-49.25-TEST-46.37, Mark Waugh-FC-52.04-TEST-41.81

Posted by fazald on (June 18, 2011, 13:26 GMT)

Greg Chappell is all talk & no action. Only action we have seen so far since his appointment as a full- time selector is further decline in our standards in world cricket rankings. We expected atleast he could infuse some sanity into the selection process regarding decisions taken in recent times but nothing fruitful to aussie cricket has happened so far.The same drama continues where players who have performed get axed( Katich, Mckay, Starc) whilst those who keep failing regularly get selected( Smith, Doherthy, White, Johnson) & those who perform well for their states ( O'Keefe, Jacques, Hodge) have been totally ignored.How can there be good player selector relationship when there is total confusion & frustration among certain players who are being victimised due to some mysterious reasons by our selectors.As such this so called player selector closer relationship is just another empty talk from Greg Chappell & is not to be taken seriously.

Posted by Barnesy4444 on (June 18, 2011, 13:11 GMT)

Steve Waugh, Mark Taylor, Ian Healy, Gilchrist, Hayden, what are these blokes doing? They should be putting their hands up to be coach or selector instead they are getting paid good money for talking on TV.

Phil Hughes should never have been dropped in 2009. His confidence hasn't recovered. Thanks selectors. Come on you other blokes put your bloody hands up.

Posted by popcorn on (June 18, 2011, 12:47 GMT)

Twenty 20 may not be bad, IPL definitely is. The ONLY way Cricket Boards can put their foot down is : When a Test Team or ODI Team is announced for a Home or Away Tour,and a Conditioning Camp is announced, and some of those players are in IPL or Champion League Teams as well,if those players opt to play in the IPL,rather than undergo Conditioniung Training - like Mike Hussey and Dougie Bollinger did, they should AUTOMATICALLY be removed from the Test / ODI Team.Let them choose between Club or Country.We saw how unprepared and unfit Dougie Bollinger and Mike Hussey were for the Away Tour of India.

Posted by popcorn on (June 18, 2011, 12:38 GMT)

Greg Chappell has put his foot in his mouth. Would you call Simon Katich " a player on the fringe of the team" or a "more established" player? Wouid you say "he feels pretty confident and comfortable with where he's at"? And then you axe him without notice? Is THIS communication?

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Daniel Brettig Assistant editor Daniel Brettig had been a journalist for eight years when he joined ESPNcricinfo, but his fascination with cricket dates back to the early 1990s, when his dad helped him sneak into the family lounge room to watch the end of day-night World Series matches well past bedtime. Unapologetically passionate about indie music and the South Australian Redbacks, Daniel's chief cricketing achievement was to dismiss Wisden Almanack editor Lawrence Booth in the 2010 Ashes press match in Perth - a rare Australian victory that summer.
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