The International Cricket Council on Sunday announced its team of the 2015 Cricket World Cup without any players from India featuring in the XI, which includes a 12th man. In the aftermath of the final every media house covering the event would have selected it’s team of the tournament. The Sports Eagle is no different and you can see the team we selected here: http://thesportseagle.co.za/?p=19761
These things are subjective of course but considering the virtual coup d’etat staged last year by the “Big Three” led by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) it is almost unthinkable that the ICC would omit an India player from this list, particularly since they were the the defending champions and reached the semi-finals. We ourselves selected just one but felt that at least two were very unlucky not to make the side. That said one would have thought the ICC would have included one player from that nation simply as a courtesy.
Nevertheless, the ICC chose Brendon McCullum as its captain. McCullum was chosen as the captain following his aggressive, innovative and inspirational leadership during the 44-day tournament that was the cornerstone of his team’s progression to the final where it lost to Australia by seven wickets. In doing so, McCullum also scored 328 runs in nine matches with four half-centuries at a strike-rate of 188.50.
The team was chosen by a select group of experts who were given the task of picking a balanced side on the basis of performances in the tournament. Statistics were used but were not the sole basis for selections. In addition to McCullum, the side includes four other New Zealanders – Corey Anderson, Trent Boult, Martin Guptill, Daniel Vettori – three Australians in Glenn Maxwell, Steven Smith and Mitchell Starc, two South Africans, AB De Villiers and Morne Morkel, with Sri Lanka’s Kumar Sangakkara as wicketkeeper-batsman.
Zimbabwe’s Brendan Taylor, who finished with 433 runs in six matches, was named as the 12th man.
Team of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 in batting order:
Martin Guptill (New Zealand)
Brendon McCullum (New Zealand (captain)
Kumar Sangakkara (Sri Lanka) (wicketkeeper)
Steven Smith (Australia)
AB De Villiers (South Africa)
Glenn Maxwell (Australia)
Corey Anderson (New Zealand)
Daniel Vettori (New Zealand)
Mitchell Starc (Australia)
Trent Boult (New Zealand)
Morne Morkel (South Africa)
Brendan Taylor (Zimbabwe) (12th man)
ICC General Manager – Cricket, Geoff Allardice, chairman of the panel, said: ‘The panel had an extremely difficult choice of selecting a 12-member squad at the back of an outstanding tournament, highlighted by some eye-catching individual performances including two double-centuries, 38 centuries, two hat-tricks and 28 four-wicket hauls. There were a number of other players that were discussed as possible selections in the team. These included batsmen Mahmudullah (Bangladesh) and Shaiman Anwar (UAE), fast bowlers Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Shami (both India), Wahab Riaz (Pakistan) and spinners Imran Tahir (South Africa) and Ravichandran Ashwin (India). But there were so many brilliant individual performances during the tournament that it was not possible to fit them into the team. The panel eventually came up with this side, which, in their view, was the most balanced outfit that is capable of beating any side on any given day.’