Left field

The Reuters global sports blog

All-time world cricket XI proves difficult to choose


Garfield Sobers stirred a minor controversy when he stated a preference for India’s Subhash Gupte ahead of Shane Warne in a mythical all-time World XI.

In an introduction to “In a League of their Own”, a recently released book in which 100 great cricketers select their ideal XI, Sobers said he found it too difficult to select his greatest team.

He leaves, though, no doubt about his personal philosophy, an uncompromising and thoroughly Caribbean commitment to attacking cricket.

Peter May, for example, is widely regarded as the finest English batsman since World War Two. To Sobers, his lack of a hook shot disqualifies him from the elite.

Cricket’s model professional to declare at last

In the Australian summer of 1982 Richie Benaud was approached by “a fair-haired angelic little lad of about 12″.

“Did you ever play cricket for Australia, Mr Benaud?” the cherub asked.

Richie Benaud prepares for final delivery

Richie Benaud, the doyen of cricket commentary, will retire from television next year.

The 78-year-old former Australia captain told Sydney radio he was quitting after his current contract ends in 12 months. “I’ll be doing Australian cricket next year, 2010, but I don’t do any television at all anywhere else now and when I finish next year, then I’ll be doing other things,” he said.