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The greatest allrounder

Welcome to Cricinfo's Greatest Allrounder site in partnership with Volkswagen Touareg, the official vehicle of the England Cricket Team. The purpose of which is to decide just who is the greatest allrounder to have played the game.

Cricinfo staff
23-Oct-2006


Cricinfo staff deep in discussion over just who is the greatest allrounder © Jonathan Hungin
Welcome to Cricinfo's Greatest Allrounder site in partnership with Volkswagen Touareg, the official vehicle of the England Cricket Team. The purpose of this site is to decide just who is the greatest allrounder to have played the game. The experts will weigh in with their opinions and so can you, the user. Who will you choose?
Tell us what you think in our greatest allrounder blog
To help us in this debate we have drawn up a shortlist of 20 players who we think should be considered for this accolade and over the next 20 weeks we will be providing in-depth feature articles and stats analysis around these cricketers. This will include:
  • A weekly in-depth feature of each player
  • A look back at 10 of the best allrounder performances in international cricket
  • Fortnightly video profiles on 10 of our shortlist
  • Monthly statistical analysis comparing the career records of 'The 20'
  • Photo galleries of all of the players in action
  • Once we have presented the 20 players in full, we will spend a month deliberating on a decision and during this time, you the user will be able to vote on who you think should be named Cricinfo's Greatest Allrounder. The final announcement will be made by the end of the World Cup that takes place in the Caribbean in March and April next year.
    In addition to this coverage there is some fun stuff - you can tell us what you think in our allrounder blog, you can enter our competition to win tickets to the Ashes and you will be able to download wallpapers of your favourite allrounders.
    The 20 allrounders
    The challenge of picking a shortlist of 20 players for the Volkswagen Touareg Greatest allrounder was far from easy. Deciding who should be on such a list for batsmen or bowlers would lean heavily on statistics, but for allrounders ... there are too many ifs and buts and everyone has a personal favourite. While all those considered for the shortlist had strong attributes, in the end it came down to a long and often heated discussion among the senior editorial team. The top 20 was changed several times, although a dozen or so picked themselves. Who we left out will probably provoke as much discussion as who we included. In the coming weeks we will put the case for those who made the cut, and then you can give us your view. The shortlist:
    Of the 20 candidates we have chosen, Kapil Dev has the most Test wickets (434), Jacques Kallis has the most Test runs (8033), Sir Garry Sobers has the highest Test batting average ( 57.78), Keith Miller has the lowest Test bowling average (22.97).
    Then there's one-day cricket, Wasim Akram has 502 wickets, the best for any bowler, while Hadlee has the best average (21.56). Adam Gilchrist tops the limited-overs run-list with 8233 with Kallis appearing again with the top batting average - 43.64.
    And then there are the factors that statistics cannot shed light upon. How do you place a value on Imran Khan leading his "cornered Tigers" to World Cup victory in 1992? And what about the effect Ian Botham's heroics had on English cricket in 1981?
    The fun is in the debate and we hope to provide all the ammunition you need to have a long and, hopefully, informed chat down the pub.