XIs January 28, 2009

World’s Dullest XI, part 1 (Appendix)

Tomorrow will bring the long-awaited announcement of numbers 7 to 11 in the Confectionery Stall Post-1981 All-Time Dullest World XI, putting tedious cricketers and lovers of tedious cricket out of their misery at last
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Tomorrow (here it is, Ed.) will bring the long-awaited announcement of numbers 7 to 11 in the Confectionery Stall Post-1981 All-Time Dullest World XI, putting tedious cricketers and lovers of tedious cricket out of their misery at last.

In the meantime, this is clearly an issue that has stoked the fires of Confectionery Stallers throughout the universe. Many thanks for your responses to this most emotive of topics, and I fully understand the uproar generated by the omission of some of the most negative players of the modern era: men who have driven you to hair-rending, eye-poking frustration with their refusal to countenance the idea of a full follow-through.

Here, therefore, are explanations for the exclusion from the Dull XI batting line-up of some of those you have nominated.

Geoffrey Boycott: excluded purely because this is a 1981-Ashes-and-after team. Boycott therefore only had the final few months of his Test career in which to press his claims. And press them he did, grinding along merrily at 34 runs per hundred balls. Were this a 1964-1981 team, he would be the first, second and third names on the teamsheet.

Rahul Dravid, Sir Michael Atherton, Jacques Kallis: too classically orthodox and stylish for this team of the awkward, inelegant and pokey. Although each has had innumerable moments of spectacular unspectacularity – Dravid’s 61-ball 3 against England in Bangalore in 2001-02; Atherton’s 11 off 90 against New Zealand in 1999; Kallis’s six-hour unbeaten 85 as South Africa powered towards a declaration against England in 1999-2000, to pick just three especially turgid cherries from a smorgasbord of strokelessness – a soporific scoring rate is not sufficient in itself to qualify for selection. You must be fundamentally unwatchable on every level, even when making your rare sorties into attack. If Kirsten had ever scored a 130-ball double century, it would still have felt like you had taken cricketing Mogadon.

Shivnarine Chanderpaul: too quirky and too good. Disqualified for scoring a 69-ball century against Australia. Reinstated for 11-hour 136 against India. But redisqualified for ethereal timing and heroic defiance of the orthodox.

Jimmy Adams: too influenced by injury. A man who had the patience, nerve and sheer unadulterated rudeness to score a 370-ball century against Zimbabwe (let me confirm that: against Zimbabwe) would appear to be a shoo-in, but it should be remembered that, before having his cheekbone squished by an Andre van Troost bouncer in 1995, Adams rattled along at a relatively jaunty 45 per 100 balls in Tests. After his appalling injury, he squirreled out his runs at a joyless 31 per 100 (and his average sunk from 62 to 29).

Wasim Jaffer: Test strike rate of 48 per 100 balls. Cut the guy some slack.





Kepler Wessels: exciting when he was semi-Australian, less so as a Protea. Quite a lot less so, in fact © Getty Images

Kepler Wessels: unarguable contender on grounds of his sub-zero-frills style, but tonked it around at 50 per 100 in his Australian incarnation, before returning home to South Africa, and winding himself back down to an acceptably Protean 40. What does this reveal about the cricketing cultures of the two nations? Everything.

Mudassar Nazar, Shoaib Mohammad, Mark Richardson: selectorial whim. Formidable candidates, but there is no shame missing out to grinders of the dullness of Edgar, Marsh, Kirsten, Tavare, Shastri and Tillakaratne.

Grant Flower: up against Shastri. Could have done little more to convince the selectors with his unthreatening but tidy left-arm spin and unthreatening but tidy right-handed batting, but up against Shastri.

Brendon Kuruppu: possible flash-in-the-pan. One innings of unimpeachable dull greatness – a 777-minute double-hundred on debut – cannot compete with the years and years and years and years and years of creasebound inactivity which the members of this very special XI have demonstrated. Kuruppu also spanked England around Lords for an hour in 1988, raising doubts about his true grinding status.

I hope this has quelled the seething resentment that your own particular least favourite blockers and nudgers have not received the recognition they deserve. Being a selector is a difficult job at the best of times. When honing down a team of world-class snooze-inducers, with so many outstanding candidates to choose from, it becomes impossible to please everyone.

The wicketkeeper, bowlers and twelfth man will be unveiled tomorrow.

Andy Zaltzman is a stand-up comedian, a regular on the BBC Radio 4, and a writer

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dwijottam on January 30, 2009, 10:06 GMT

    Indian openers have always been special. Kicking off against England at Chennai in 1982, Gavaskar got 25 off 135, which was a quick clip compared with Pranab Roy's 6 off 81. Roy significantly improved his strike rate to 38 in the second innings: 60 off 227. Interestingly, this is probably the only father-son combination that would qualify for an Indian blocker's brigade team: Pankaj Roy, Pranab's father, was a reputed blocker.

  • Sameera Malinda on January 30, 2009, 8:29 GMT

    What about Asanka Gurusinghe of Sri Lanka. He was same as Thilakarathne & was a master plodder.

  • Vikram on January 30, 2009, 7:21 GMT

    The International Squad of so called aspiring players who never shined or were never consistent! Should have played atleast 10-15 matches in ODI. May be a couple of test matches.Openers - Adam Bacher (SA), Dion Abraham (Zim), Michael Di Venuto (Aus - Leftie),Salim Elahi (Pak), Matthew Horne (NZ), Craig Spearman (NZ) Number 3 - Wajahatullah Wasti (Pak), Hamish Marshall (NZ)Number 4 - John Crawley (Eng), Lanka De Silva (SL), Dale Benkenstein (SA) All rounder - Mark Ealham (Eng - Medium Pace), Adam Hollioke (Eng), Shane Lee ( Aus) Fast Bowlers - Geoff Allot (NZ - leftie), Nixon Mclean (WI), Alan Mullally (Eng - leftie), Ruchira Perrera (SL - leftie), Suresh Perrera (SL), Heath Davis ( NZ), Kabir Khan ( Pak - leftie),Nantie Hayward (SA),Daryll Tuffy (NZ)Leg Spinner - Cameron White (Aus),Raul Lewis (WI),Malinga Bandara(SL),Mahendra Nagamootoo(WI) Off Spin-Robert Croft(Eng),Gavin Robertson(Aus)WK - Courtney Browne (WI) Left Arm Spinner - (Vacant)Knocking on the doors-Mohammad Akram

  • Vikram on January 30, 2009, 6:55 GMT

    Something funny but unrelated: A team comprising of people who payed very few matches (ODI and Tests) and that too boring people down. Here is a list of such an India XI and World XI. Mostly from 1993 onwards until may be 2004-05. Openers - Devang Gandhi, SS Das, Deep Dasgupta (WK), Vikram Rathore, S Ramesh Number 3 - Hemang Badani (match winner :) ), Number 4 - Jacob Martin (experienced), Atul Bedade All rounder - Sanjay Bangar, Reetinder Sodhi (youngster), J P Yadav Fast Bowlers - David Johnson, Abey Kuruvilla (experienced), Paras Mhamdrey, Debasis Mohanty (for josh), Tinu Yohanan, Thiru

    Kumaran, Harvinder Singh Left Arm Spinner - Rahul Sanghvi, Nilesh Kulkarni, Utpal Chatterjee Off Spinner - Ashish Kapoor, Noel David (good fielder and allrounder as well!), Nikhil Chopra Wk - Vijay Dahiya, Sameer Dighe, Ajay Ratra , MSK Prasad, Vijay Yadav, PArthiv Patel Leg Spinner - Sairaj Bahutule

    Knocking on team's door is - Sarandeep Singh, Parthiv Patel (for talent)

  • V, Rajesh on January 30, 2009, 6:32 GMT

    Way to go Andy, Please blog on the commentators with some statistics thrown in.:-)

  • 01061965 on January 30, 2009, 3:44 GMT

    As far as Sanjay manjerkar , If his 113 not out was not there in Pakistan against Imran,Wasim and waqar India would have lost the test and then in 3rd test of the series he got run out for 218 for which imran remarked that was the only way he could have got out but have you forget his 105 in 87 balls against south africa in delhi in 1991. more so he is the one commentator with best sence of humor.

  • Nick C on January 29, 2009, 18:58 GMT

    How about Gavaskar? In the 1975 World Cup he managed a truly soul destroyingly tedious 36no in about 170 balls. Remarkable seeing India were chasing over 300.

  • TropicalSky on January 29, 2009, 18:18 GMT

    DIMUTHU RAT Ever heard the word "sarcasm"? By the way, where did I ever mention that I am from the "subcontinent"? Thank you for the wisdom pearls though; will treasure them.

  • Khizar Hayat Khan on January 29, 2009, 15:09 GMT

    There was a batsman in WI: larry Gomes if I'm spelling it right. Where is his place in the list?

  • bala on January 29, 2009, 14:13 GMT

    @akshay ,gandha bhai,amrata, I join you in your demand for the inclusion of the Sanjay Manjerekar in this list of batting sedatives. When it comes to his job as a commentator ,he is mostly honest, unless it is about Sachin.

  • Dwijottam on January 30, 2009, 10:06 GMT

    Indian openers have always been special. Kicking off against England at Chennai in 1982, Gavaskar got 25 off 135, which was a quick clip compared with Pranab Roy's 6 off 81. Roy significantly improved his strike rate to 38 in the second innings: 60 off 227. Interestingly, this is probably the only father-son combination that would qualify for an Indian blocker's brigade team: Pankaj Roy, Pranab's father, was a reputed blocker.

  • Sameera Malinda on January 30, 2009, 8:29 GMT

    What about Asanka Gurusinghe of Sri Lanka. He was same as Thilakarathne & was a master plodder.

  • Vikram on January 30, 2009, 7:21 GMT

    The International Squad of so called aspiring players who never shined or were never consistent! Should have played atleast 10-15 matches in ODI. May be a couple of test matches.Openers - Adam Bacher (SA), Dion Abraham (Zim), Michael Di Venuto (Aus - Leftie),Salim Elahi (Pak), Matthew Horne (NZ), Craig Spearman (NZ) Number 3 - Wajahatullah Wasti (Pak), Hamish Marshall (NZ)Number 4 - John Crawley (Eng), Lanka De Silva (SL), Dale Benkenstein (SA) All rounder - Mark Ealham (Eng - Medium Pace), Adam Hollioke (Eng), Shane Lee ( Aus) Fast Bowlers - Geoff Allot (NZ - leftie), Nixon Mclean (WI), Alan Mullally (Eng - leftie), Ruchira Perrera (SL - leftie), Suresh Perrera (SL), Heath Davis ( NZ), Kabir Khan ( Pak - leftie),Nantie Hayward (SA),Daryll Tuffy (NZ)Leg Spinner - Cameron White (Aus),Raul Lewis (WI),Malinga Bandara(SL),Mahendra Nagamootoo(WI) Off Spin-Robert Croft(Eng),Gavin Robertson(Aus)WK - Courtney Browne (WI) Left Arm Spinner - (Vacant)Knocking on the doors-Mohammad Akram

  • Vikram on January 30, 2009, 6:55 GMT

    Something funny but unrelated: A team comprising of people who payed very few matches (ODI and Tests) and that too boring people down. Here is a list of such an India XI and World XI. Mostly from 1993 onwards until may be 2004-05. Openers - Devang Gandhi, SS Das, Deep Dasgupta (WK), Vikram Rathore, S Ramesh Number 3 - Hemang Badani (match winner :) ), Number 4 - Jacob Martin (experienced), Atul Bedade All rounder - Sanjay Bangar, Reetinder Sodhi (youngster), J P Yadav Fast Bowlers - David Johnson, Abey Kuruvilla (experienced), Paras Mhamdrey, Debasis Mohanty (for josh), Tinu Yohanan, Thiru

    Kumaran, Harvinder Singh Left Arm Spinner - Rahul Sanghvi, Nilesh Kulkarni, Utpal Chatterjee Off Spinner - Ashish Kapoor, Noel David (good fielder and allrounder as well!), Nikhil Chopra Wk - Vijay Dahiya, Sameer Dighe, Ajay Ratra , MSK Prasad, Vijay Yadav, PArthiv Patel Leg Spinner - Sairaj Bahutule

    Knocking on team's door is - Sarandeep Singh, Parthiv Patel (for talent)

  • V, Rajesh on January 30, 2009, 6:32 GMT

    Way to go Andy, Please blog on the commentators with some statistics thrown in.:-)

  • 01061965 on January 30, 2009, 3:44 GMT

    As far as Sanjay manjerkar , If his 113 not out was not there in Pakistan against Imran,Wasim and waqar India would have lost the test and then in 3rd test of the series he got run out for 218 for which imran remarked that was the only way he could have got out but have you forget his 105 in 87 balls against south africa in delhi in 1991. more so he is the one commentator with best sence of humor.

  • Nick C on January 29, 2009, 18:58 GMT

    How about Gavaskar? In the 1975 World Cup he managed a truly soul destroyingly tedious 36no in about 170 balls. Remarkable seeing India were chasing over 300.

  • TropicalSky on January 29, 2009, 18:18 GMT

    DIMUTHU RAT Ever heard the word "sarcasm"? By the way, where did I ever mention that I am from the "subcontinent"? Thank you for the wisdom pearls though; will treasure them.

  • Khizar Hayat Khan on January 29, 2009, 15:09 GMT

    There was a batsman in WI: larry Gomes if I'm spelling it right. Where is his place in the list?

  • bala on January 29, 2009, 14:13 GMT

    @akshay ,gandha bhai,amrata, I join you in your demand for the inclusion of the Sanjay Manjerekar in this list of batting sedatives. When it comes to his job as a commentator ,he is mostly honest, unless it is about Sachin.

  • Suhail on January 29, 2009, 12:14 GMT

    What about Anshuman Gaekwad and his heroic 671 minutes for his Test-best 201 against Pakistan at Jalandhar in 1982-83.

  • BillytheBandit on January 29, 2009, 11:42 GMT

    Who could forget Mike Atherton's epic 492 ball innings of 185 not out to save the Wanderers test in Dec 1995? He batted for 10hrs 43min but was completely overshadowed by Jack Russell, whose innings of 29 not out took 4hrs 34min. This monumental innings lasted 235 balls of which and consisted of 14 scoring strokes. The highlight was the 72 minutes he spent on 25 not out without scoring a run.

  • Dimuthu Rat on January 29, 2009, 11:26 GMT

    just to add to Laki. TropicalSky , speak for yourself man. Stop crying wolf for everything that doesn't happen the way you like it. Not all decisions are made based on race or geography. When someone actually does have prejudice against you, nobody's gonna listen to you if WE keep this up. i said WE 'cos i'm also from the subcontinent. Just appreciate this hilarious blog without shouting slogans.

  • Dimuthu Rat on January 29, 2009, 11:13 GMT

    @Navin - Asanka Gurusinha!!!!He was a legend though! hahaha He was a bl00dy frustrating batsman to watch :) i remember him defending 5 balls and taking a single off the last ball for SO MANY OVERS! (mind you, in ODI cricket!) in fact, my friends and I called that "doing a Gura" :) On the other hand, no man who's capable of hitting more than 10 sixers in their test career should be allowed

  • Adway on January 29, 2009, 10:31 GMT

    Why miss the Dravid's attempt at 12 from 96, when his team was in lead with 319+ runs? The captain himself had decided to play safe by not asking England to follow on, & when India was reduced to 11-3, the captain did his best to make cricket uninteresting. & I haven't even touched Dravid's ODI batting in earlier days.

  • Anonymous on January 29, 2009, 10:17 GMT

    Gary Kirsten managed to attain the number 8 spot on the ICC's all time ODI batting rankings. I think that HAS to disqualify him!! And of course being South African i'm completely biased, but he played some nice cover drives! Do you have a wicket keeper already? Might I suggest Jack Russel? The sight of him leaving the ball with that pulling inside line style was just too much for me!!

  • Rigga on January 29, 2009, 10:14 GMT

    Haha, can't believe Mark Richardson didn't make the cut. However, the team was amazing so it was hard to find a place for him. On the topic of dullest bowlers I once remember Bryan Strang running in at the Basin Reserve in Wellington all day long bowling into a terribly strong gale. He bowled at about 105km/h and bowled every single ball on the exact same 5 cent coin. Probably the most boring day of cricket I have witnessed.

  • Laki on January 29, 2009, 10:07 GMT

    TropicalSky: I felt I should point out to you that Andy's criteria was "post 1981" which I guess is possibly what rules out Mudassar Nazar's record slowest century rather than any inherent racism/discrimination as you claim.

  • Naresh on January 29, 2009, 9:18 GMT

    John Wright.

  • praveen on January 29, 2009, 8:56 GMT

    this is a nice article

  • Anand on January 29, 2009, 8:52 GMT

    Guess you need to clarify dullest v/s fast scoring. You can look pretty good defending also. And might look ugly when you score quickly. Most of the people here are taking dull for not sccoring. That's for sure is huge part of it. But not necessarily always.

    Dravid and Atherton used to look good while defending too.

    How about most eye pleasing players of modern era ?

    VVS laxman, Brian Lara, Mark Waugh, Michael Vaughan, Azar. This has nothing to do with who scored fast.. Easy on eye players. Whom you could watch & feel "ah! this game is so easy to play".

  • Rahul on January 29, 2009, 7:58 GMT

    fantastic two posts zaltzman. comic cricket satire at its best. reading the comments my heart does go out to dravid and kallis though, two stalwarts who are often critised by the undiscerning fan even with 10,000 runs in both formats of the game (almost for kallis).

  • Harish on January 29, 2009, 7:50 GMT

    Trevor Gripper - with a strike rate of 32 in 20 tests is a front runner. So too Mark Richardson whose 2776 runs came at a strike rate of 37. I am sure his stodginess is somehow masked by his strikerate. The chap regrets his hardwork being betrayed by his strike rate.

  • DJ on January 29, 2009, 7:11 GMT

    patrick patterson gets my vote for the ugliest cricketer ever. I remember watching him from binoculars when the WI was touring India and all I could see was that nose!

  • Swami on January 29, 2009, 3:20 GMT

    I remember sweating after watching Rizwan uz-Zaman pile up 60 runs in 5 hours on a dead Eden Gardens wicket in front of 100,000 spectators. Apparently the cricket association refunded all their tickets and paid them compensation to avoid complaints of torture. I cant believe Rahul Dravid is not in the list. Even in the recent Chennai test against England, I was at the ground when Sehwag smacked 83, and everyone in the crowd around me was preparing to leave if either Sehwag or Gambhir got out and Dravid came in.

  • Navin on January 29, 2009, 2:57 GMT

    Check Asanka Gurusinha, a Sri Lankan!!!

  • Prasanna S on January 29, 2009, 1:34 GMT

    Possible WK candidates(just top-of-the-head): Kirmani, Chris Read, Brendon Kuruppu(despite being ignored for a pure batting spot),David Williams?

    Bowlers: Angus Fraser, Mark Ealham, Gavin Larsen, Corey Collymore, Chaminda Vaas, Tim May, Craig Mathews(RSA)?

  • NS on January 29, 2009, 1:32 GMT

    Finally a column which just looks at the whole thing like a game and not a thing of life and death though all these batsmen can bore you to death. I have not seen some players but I can vouch for Shastri. I mean he could not play any other scoring shot apart from chapati shot or when a spinner comes, he might come down and hoist him over mid wicket and only mid wicket,no where else. A strokeless bore... And for bowlers, I know atleast of one who can come to the list Ewen Chatfield, Pringle terrible to watch (talk about 11 bowlers of NZ except for Hadlee)

  • JB on January 29, 2009, 1:05 GMT

    Wk - David Williams (WI) / Lee Germon Bowlers - Robert Croft, Gavin Robertson, Nehra, Harvinder Singh, Mervin Dillon, Anderson, NZ pace bowler after 2004

  • Soundar on January 28, 2009, 23:21 GMT

    May I ask for a 'worst fielders' special too please.

    And chime in with a couple of nominations while I am at it.

    Dilip Doshi who regularly trotted along with the rapidly decelerating ball to the boundary and picked it up with his fingertips after it had gently toppled over the ropes.

    Navjot Sidhu who would rarely come out to field after he'd had a bat.

    Ashish Kapoor at the third man boundary (?) in NZ gently walked across to an incoming groundstroke, knelt down to it, let it through his legs and stood around looking for someone to blame.

    And of course, Sourav Ganguly.

  • TropicalSky on January 28, 2009, 23:15 GMT

    In a career spanning over 75 tests, Mudassar Nazar has clobbered runs at a strike rate of 45 and still holds the world record for snail ton. In ODI's, he motored along at a strike rate of more than 50 (51). Mudassar was an allrounder: At a strike rate of 90, he crashed a wicket, every 15 overs that he bowled. To sum it up, a positive cricketer who made things happen on the field. Career Highlight: Too many to list. 1977-78 England tour of Pakistan. He took nine hours and 17 minutes to reach three figures and made 114 off 449 balls in the first test at Lahore (slowest century in test cricket ever and unbroken after 20 years) and followed it up with scores of 27 off 133 balls and 66 off 232 balls in the second test at Sind. In 76 test matches, he has one hit over the rope to his credit. (Yeah, that's right: He hit one six in his entire test career).

    If Mudassar Nazar's credentials don't get him into the all time list, then it must be the usual ICC/ Andy's discrimination against Subcont

  • TropicalSky on January 28, 2009, 22:45 GMT

    To put together a team of Tediums and leave out Mudassar Nazar is gross injustice; not only to the man, but to a great cricketing nation for denying what is it's rightful claim to the art of Hypnosis. In a career spanning over 75 tests, Mudassar has clobbered runs all over the world at a strike rate of 45 and still holds the world record for snail ton. In ODI's, he motored along at a strike rate of more than 50 (51). Mind you, Mudassar was an allrounder: At a strike rate of 90, he crashed a wicket, every 15 overs that he bowled. To sum it up, a positive cricketer who made things happen on the field.

    Career Highlight: Too many to list.

    1977-78 England tour of Pakistan. He took nine hours and 17 minutes to reach three figures and made 114 off 449 balls in the first test at Lahore (slowest century in test cricket ever and unbroken after 20 years) and followed it up with scores of 27 off 133 balls and 66 off 232 balls in the second test at Sind. However, he was not his usual self going into the third test and smashed 76 off 209 balls with six fours. Scyld Berry on Cricinfo writes "His innings against England in Lahore in 1977-78 was as slow as they come and wouldn't attract a crowd of 50,000 nowadays".

    In 76 test matches, he has one hit over the rope to his credit. (Yeah, that's right: He hit one six in his entire test career).

    Selection is a tough job Andy, and we know you can pick only so many. But if Mudassar's credentials don't get him into the all time list, then it must be the usual ICC (read England-Australia) discrimination against the subcontinental players and teams.

  • safwan on January 28, 2009, 21:52 GMT

    mudaasir nazar should be in every such team....lol...in the case of dravid....superb player....but slow at times.....u wud always instead prefer watching sehwag, gilchrist or afridi bat!....although afridi doest usually last long.

  • Richbails on January 28, 2009, 21:25 GMT

    Surely Angus Fraser is a shoein for boring bowlers

  • mk49 on January 28, 2009, 21:01 GMT

    Re: Babu's comment on Sidhu. Not Fair. One bowler Sidhu walloped the begeezes out of was Shane Warne. Against spinners of all quality Sidhu was a terror.

    Next we need an "ugly" batsmen team (ala Chanderpaul) and "beautiful" batsmen team (VVS, you beauty).

  • Gizza on January 28, 2009, 20:57 GMT

    Yeah Sanjay Manjrekar was a terrible batsman, not just boring but terrible. He has an average of 37 in Tests with a strike rate of 38. If he can't make the team then he should be made the head commentator for the boring XI.

    @Andy Zaltarman, you should replace Sanjay on those Cricinfo audio shows!

  • Laki on January 28, 2009, 20:37 GMT

    Great Stuff, I still feel that Mark Richardson should have been in given his nick name is riggamortus. Also a couple of other kiwi nominations: Geoff Allott must deserve honorable mention if not for bowling then for his Herculean stand at the crease: South Africa Vs New Zealand, Feb 27 - March 3, 1999, Played at Eden Park, Auckland Geoff Allot played for 101 minutes (77 balls) and was out caught without scoring a run. I still remember seeing that match. Geoff Allot waved his bat to acknowledge after playing for 100 mins without scoring a run.

    And "Mr Line and Length" Gavin Larsen who made a career of dotting down such accurate yet uninspiring medium pace deliveries, to end with an economy rate of 2.1 but strike rate of 81.9 boring the batsmen away from the crease.

  • Amarta Ghorai on January 28, 2009, 20:18 GMT

    I agree with Akshay. Sanjay Manjrekar should make this list as one fo thje most boring batsman of all times. And now he bores us to death with his commnetary whether it be on tv or expert talk on cricinfo. Cricinfo , please an ardent fan pleads his case.

  • gandabhai on January 28, 2009, 19:55 GMT

    Akshay , i totally agree with you about sanjay manjrekar however you forgot to mention worst Indian ever.

  • gandabhai on January 28, 2009, 19:50 GMT

    AKSHAY , I think we must get together & swop notes on sanjay manjrekar .I totally agree with you.And he deserves all the stick he should get from INDIAN supporters.

  • Bobby Gosh on January 28, 2009, 19:23 GMT

    I will definitely echo the opinion expressed in a previous post regarding suitability of Sanjay Manjrekar. SM was not only boring but also somewhat cruel as he seemed to relish the atrocities he inflicted on the opposition and the viewers. A hall mark of true grinder. As far as grinding goes Manjrekar is in his own league or should I dare say in the league of Shastri himself. I remember growing in 80s my brother would threaten me with Shastri centuries if I did not do his bidding.

  • Kayla on January 28, 2009, 18:34 GMT

    Andy, your infinite knowledge on the subject of cricket actually makes me want to try to understand the game. No offense to anyone here--I'm American and have no clue. It's beginning to intrigue me thanks to you, Andy. Please keep up the revelations of obscure cricket factoids. Someday, I might actually have an inkling of what you're talking about.

  • vinod on January 28, 2009, 18:12 GMT

    1. Mr Nick, Shastri played the innings in 1990 and not in 1989. Also to add to it his innings of 10 runs of 68 balls against Australia in an ODI at Perth in 1991. 2. What about Sanjay Manjrekar's knock of 104 off 422 balls against Zimbabwe in their inaugural test match.

  • Stuart on January 28, 2009, 17:53 GMT

    Great articles, keep it up! BTW, you can also disqualify Boycott on the grounds of the 1965 Gillette Cup final, though maybe the fact that he could do that makes it worse.

  • Nick S on January 28, 2009, 17:50 GMT

    I vaguely recall A Gaekwad in the early 80s not exacatly rushing a double hundred.

    G Kirsten (from a test perspective) was horribly stodgy to watch.

    I guess with the Windies team of strokemakers round him you suggest that Larry Gomes wasn't all that exciting.

    Personally the MOST BORING innings I've ever had to watch was Ravi Shastri at The Oval in 1989...!

  • Travis on January 28, 2009, 17:05 GMT

    Roy & HG (noted Aussie sporting satirists also responsible for the daily recap TV show "The Dream" during the Sydney Olympics, during which footage of Greco-Roman wrestling was inevitably shown accompanied by Barry White songs) did this in about '91 when the ABC cricket book (every anorak Aussie fan's companion throughout the cricketing summer) listed their 'Ray Bright's XI', which included the top state-of-the-art boring cricketers of the age.

    At the time I hadn't heard of Roy & HG and didn't get the joke.

  • Akshay on January 28, 2009, 16:25 GMT

    Hey, what about Sanjay Manjrekar? Is he the most boring batsman ever to take the cricket field? he certainly was the worst batsman ever to don Indian Gloves and now worst commentator ever to talk on Cricinfo.

  • Michael on January 28, 2009, 16:10 GMT

    Regarding Kallis, surely the fact he has the fastest test 50 ever, as well as the way he destroyed the New Zealand Bowling attack last year, plus that a Strike of 44 really isn't that bad should make him an automatic non choice

  • babu on January 28, 2009, 15:37 GMT

    Wow great two pieces by Andy. Cant wait for the concluding article. Btw u seem to ve forgotten about shiv sunder Das or SIddhu. Siddhu was a bit like shastri in sense that he had only two gears. And the top gear was always reserved for the likes of dharamsena or mahendra nagamotoo.

  • Aditya on January 28, 2009, 15:28 GMT

    I'm happy Dravid wasn't in. His recent stodginess in Australia was because he was out of form...otherwise he had an OK strike rate, and his 233 in Adelaide on the 2003-04 tour was simply the best. Not to mention he recently went insane in a one-dayer in England scoring 92 in very quick time with a few towering sixes! Of course, even Boycott could biff when he wanted to, maybe he was satisfied too easily. But seriously, what about the bowlers? I haven't seen too many dull bowlers to be quite honest, I mean the bad ones usually get smacked around, and the ones that don't usually get wickets. There's nothing dull about that, is it? Although I would probably include one of your run-of-the-mill 90s England medium pacers...

  • Gugu on January 28, 2009, 15:00 GMT

    Kirsten was a bloody good player. It is kind of a disregard to put him in the dulliest list. He was one of the most profilic openers of his time and his record was equally compelling in ODI cricket (and yes I confirm: ODI cricket!). Your Sir Michael Atherton, not so!

  • H on January 28, 2009, 14:52 GMT

    Shame I couldn't comment before but: Andy, I have a little something extra to add about Tavare. I am a Kent supporter, and have many fond memories of him coming in to bat at no.3 for Kent. If Benson happened to be the unlucky opener out we were greeted with the prospect of Tavare outscoring Neil Taylor. Oh, those halcyon days: Kent going to lunch on the first morning with a grand total of about 35 runs on the board...

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  • H on January 28, 2009, 14:52 GMT

    Shame I couldn't comment before but: Andy, I have a little something extra to add about Tavare. I am a Kent supporter, and have many fond memories of him coming in to bat at no.3 for Kent. If Benson happened to be the unlucky opener out we were greeted with the prospect of Tavare outscoring Neil Taylor. Oh, those halcyon days: Kent going to lunch on the first morning with a grand total of about 35 runs on the board...

  • Gugu on January 28, 2009, 15:00 GMT

    Kirsten was a bloody good player. It is kind of a disregard to put him in the dulliest list. He was one of the most profilic openers of his time and his record was equally compelling in ODI cricket (and yes I confirm: ODI cricket!). Your Sir Michael Atherton, not so!

  • Aditya on January 28, 2009, 15:28 GMT

    I'm happy Dravid wasn't in. His recent stodginess in Australia was because he was out of form...otherwise he had an OK strike rate, and his 233 in Adelaide on the 2003-04 tour was simply the best. Not to mention he recently went insane in a one-dayer in England scoring 92 in very quick time with a few towering sixes! Of course, even Boycott could biff when he wanted to, maybe he was satisfied too easily. But seriously, what about the bowlers? I haven't seen too many dull bowlers to be quite honest, I mean the bad ones usually get smacked around, and the ones that don't usually get wickets. There's nothing dull about that, is it? Although I would probably include one of your run-of-the-mill 90s England medium pacers...

  • babu on January 28, 2009, 15:37 GMT

    Wow great two pieces by Andy. Cant wait for the concluding article. Btw u seem to ve forgotten about shiv sunder Das or SIddhu. Siddhu was a bit like shastri in sense that he had only two gears. And the top gear was always reserved for the likes of dharamsena or mahendra nagamotoo.

  • Michael on January 28, 2009, 16:10 GMT

    Regarding Kallis, surely the fact he has the fastest test 50 ever, as well as the way he destroyed the New Zealand Bowling attack last year, plus that a Strike of 44 really isn't that bad should make him an automatic non choice

  • Akshay on January 28, 2009, 16:25 GMT

    Hey, what about Sanjay Manjrekar? Is he the most boring batsman ever to take the cricket field? he certainly was the worst batsman ever to don Indian Gloves and now worst commentator ever to talk on Cricinfo.

  • Travis on January 28, 2009, 17:05 GMT

    Roy & HG (noted Aussie sporting satirists also responsible for the daily recap TV show "The Dream" during the Sydney Olympics, during which footage of Greco-Roman wrestling was inevitably shown accompanied by Barry White songs) did this in about '91 when the ABC cricket book (every anorak Aussie fan's companion throughout the cricketing summer) listed their 'Ray Bright's XI', which included the top state-of-the-art boring cricketers of the age.

    At the time I hadn't heard of Roy & HG and didn't get the joke.

  • Nick S on January 28, 2009, 17:50 GMT

    I vaguely recall A Gaekwad in the early 80s not exacatly rushing a double hundred.

    G Kirsten (from a test perspective) was horribly stodgy to watch.

    I guess with the Windies team of strokemakers round him you suggest that Larry Gomes wasn't all that exciting.

    Personally the MOST BORING innings I've ever had to watch was Ravi Shastri at The Oval in 1989...!

  • Stuart on January 28, 2009, 17:53 GMT

    Great articles, keep it up! BTW, you can also disqualify Boycott on the grounds of the 1965 Gillette Cup final, though maybe the fact that he could do that makes it worse.

  • vinod on January 28, 2009, 18:12 GMT

    1. Mr Nick, Shastri played the innings in 1990 and not in 1989. Also to add to it his innings of 10 runs of 68 balls against Australia in an ODI at Perth in 1991. 2. What about Sanjay Manjrekar's knock of 104 off 422 balls against Zimbabwe in their inaugural test match.