Greatest enmity: THE INDO-PAK XI vs THE ASHES XI - Sportzwiki
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Greatest enmity: THE INDO-PAK XI vs THE ASHES XI

How will it be if two greatest enmity of cricket play each other making two teams from their own rivalry? Just imagine the best Ashes XI of all-time playing the best Indo-Pak XI somewhere in someday. ICC respecting immense value of cricket fan’s wish often organise super series matches like Asia XI vs ICC XI, and in later year we have seen the great World Cricket Tsunami Appeal match in 2005 the ICC super series between the number World XI and Asia XI.   

The matches were played in Melbourne, Australia. ICC gave the match official status as it was first time that official matches played not between two countries. Cricket has witnessed this kind of match for the first time in 1970 when mighty England played World XI, but ICC did not recorgonise the match as official matche.

Similarly, if a match organise between the Ashes XI and Indo-Pak XI respecting the folklore of cricket will arguably be the best idea to celebrate the best of cricket. Here we are picking the all time best XI from Ashes rivalry and Indi-Pak rivalry.

The INDO –PAK XI

Openers

Virender Sehwag:

 Viru is my first choice for the opening slot. He as a Test opener gave India prolific start with his amazing stroke play. In Test cricket he can rotate strike at any conditions. His intuition of playing long innings will always be spectators delight. His performance speaks for him.  He has astonishing average against Pakistan in Test -91.14, the best among his trans-border mates. From 2004 to 2006, he accumulated 1276 runs in nine Tests with highest 309 against Pakistan.

Hanif Mohammed:

My second choice is Hanif Mohammed for his impeccable defense and  knack of playing long innings. He was the first star of Pakistan cricket, the “Little Master” who played the longest innings in Test history- his 970-minute 337 against West Indies in Bridgetown in 1957-58- then followed it a year later with highest first class innings to that point, 499 run out.  He without any headgear scored 736 runs in just six matches against West Indian fast bowlers with an astonishing average of 73.60 in the year 1958-59.

You can argue for Sunil Gavaskar, but, I can’t take two backfoot players in my team. No doubt Gavaskar has superior average than Sehwag against other countries, but Sehwag’s astonishing record against Pakistan is no match for Gavaskar. As a result Sehwag made a cut into the team.     

Top Order

Sachin Tendulkar: “The player of this century” with his sparkling performance against Pakistan and Australia will come to bat at first down. His uncanny ability to rotate strike on the rough surface and sound technique against the spin and fast bowl will obviously be add flare to the INDO-PAK XI. His 50 plus average against Australia and England will make him as the first choice as the 1st top order batsman.

Zaheer Abbas:

His wrist drive against the fast bowlers is one of the beautiful shots cricket has ever seen.  He has an impressive average of 51 against England and 44 against Australia.    

“Zaheer Abbas’s consistency both at first-class level and in Test was phenomenal. Where his contemporaries struggled he remained calm and calculating, displaying his technique against great spinners of time; and not a bad player of fast bowling.” Qamar Ahmed.

Middle Order

Rahul Dravid:

“The Wall” will play the role anchor in the middle of the innings. He has pretty impressive Test record against Australia, but his record against England is astonishing. In twenty one matches he scored 1950 runs with 60.93 averages.

Allrounders

Imran Khan, the captain: 

Another world cup winning all-rounder, with terrific leadership skills will obviously feature in the team and play the captaincy role. Imran Khan is indisputably the greatest cricketer to emerge from Pakistan, and arguably the world’s second-best allrounder after Garry Sobers. He took a mediocre side and transformed them into world-beaters, leading them to the World Cup title in 1992. In 88 Test matches he played scored 3807 runs with an average of 37.69 and as a bowler has 362 wickets to his name.  

Kapil Dev:

The all-rounder will give balance to the team. His venomous swing and batting will help INDO-PAK XI will give huge confidence as he is the world cup winner and the greatest fast bowler of India with 434 wickets in 131 Test. He scored 5248 runs with an average of 31.05.  

Wicket Keeper:

MS Dhoni:

I’ll bid for Dhoni for the wicketkeeper batsman player. His all-round skill will add strength to the team. He is not as good as ODI batsman. However, his modest average of 38.09 in Test and wicket keeping skills will be helpful to his team.     

Spinner:

Anil Kumble:

There is no more difficult challenge in cricket than facing Kumble o wearing surface. For every batsman his top spin is a mystery during their playing days. The legend has 203 wickets in 39 Test against Australia and England in combined.    

Fast bowlers

Wasim Akram:

Akram is rated by many as the best left-arm fast bowler of all time, and his career record certainly bears that out – along with the high regard of his contemporaries. Without any doubt he will spearhead the bowling attack. With his venomous swing he has taken 107 wickets in 31 matches in combined against Australia and England.

Fazal Mahmood

He has taken 49 wickets in 10 matches against Australia and England. Fazal’s ability to cut and seam the ball at a fair pace led him to be compared –in style and stamina-to England’s Alec Bedser. He was especially difficult to handle on the artificial pitches widely used in Pakistan in 1950s.

 

 

 

THE INDO-PAK XI

THE ASHES XI

Virender Sehwag

Jack Hobbs

Hanif Mohammed

Arthur Morris

Sachin Tendulkar

Don Bradman

Zaheer Abbas

Wally Hammond

Rahul Dravid

Allan Border (c)

Kapil Dev

Ian Botham

MS  Dhoni

Adam Gilchrist

Imran Khan (c)

Shane Warne

Anil Kumble

Dennis Lillee

Wasim Akram

Glenn MacGrath

Fazal Mahmood

Harold Larwood

 

 

 

The Ashes XI

Openers:

Jack Hobbs:

Jack Hobbs was cricket’s most prolific batsman. The right handed batsman finished with 61,237 first-class runs and 197 centuries, most of them stylishly made from the top of the Surrey or England batting orders. In his 61 match international career he scored 5410 runs with an average of 56.94.

 

Arthur Robert Morris:

The acme of elegance and the epitome of sportsmanship, Arthur Morris lost prime run-getting years to the war after the then unprecedented feat, as an 18-year-old, of scoring a hundred in each innings of his first-class debut in December 1940. By his first series against England in 1946-47, however, this calm and compact left-hander was close to the finished article, and scored three consecutive hundreds.

 

 

 

 

    

Top order

Don Bradman:

Don Bradman holds highest run scoring record- 5028 in the history of Ashes with an unachievable average of 89.78. Nevertheless, you can’t compare anybody with him for the third slot I stake.

Middle Order:

Wally Hammond:

The judgment of cricket history is that the greatest batsmen the game has known are – in order of appearance, only – WG Grace, Jack Hobbs, Walter Hammond and Don Bradman. He was undisputed successor of Jack Hobbs as England premier batsman. He 85 Test 7259 runs with an average of 58.45.  

Allan Border, the captain:

The epitome of the fighting Australian, Allan Border took over the reins of the side when they were at their lowest ebb, and leading by force of will and example, he took them to the threshold of world-champion status. He scored 11174 runs in 156 Test with an average of 50.56. He holds the record of winning 13 Ashes Test, the most by any Ashes captain. 

Alrounder:   

Ian Botham:

Those whirlwind centuries in 1981 were crucial to England’s Ashes win, but equally pivotal was his amazing spell of five for one in 28 balls, at Edgbaston, after he had been talked into bowling by Mike Brearley. He took 148 Ashes wickets in all with a potent mixture of pace, skill, swing, seam, charisma and just a smidgen of good fortune.

Wicketkeeper:

Adam Gilchrist:

You will not find an athlete wicketkeeper with more than 47 average in Test. Only one quality you may get in one. But, Adam Gilchrist, who “just hit ball” for six with his trademark pull shot, can’t be replaced by anyone.  

Spinner:

Shane Warne:

No doubt, with highest wicket haul in the history of Ashes Shane Warne will be my first choice spinner. Warne brought legspin out from a dusty closet and made it fashionable again.

Fast bowlers

Dennis Lillee:

The aggressive Australian bowling with genuine pace and swing and cut took 167 of his 355 Test wickets against England. He bowled in deadly tandem with equally aggressive Jeff Thomson. He is often described as “the complete bowler.”

Glenn MacGrath:

The most accurate and consistent bowlers took 157 Ashes wicket. His absence in 2005 Ashes proved crucial when England won the Ashes in 2005.

Harold Larwood:

The fast bowler known for Douglas Jardine’s controversial “leg-theory” tactics in the 1932-33 Bodyline series to perfection; he took 33 wickets at just under 20, and subdued Don Bradman, who was restricted to an average of “only” 56 in that series.

Gentle and modest but loyal to Douglas Jardine took 64 of his wicket in the Ashes out of his career haul of 78.  

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