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Old November 8, 2012, 09:17 AM
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Tiger Manc Tiger Manc is offline
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Originally Posted by Ian Pont
Tamim's Test average at 38 is not the highest to be honest and is certainly way less than many established players such as Strauss (plus 40), Trott (plus 50), Cook (47) and Bell (46) who have all batted at the top for England recently. The England fixtures against the top 4 countries in full 5 Test match series, are arguably far more tricky than Bangladesh's.

Shakib's batting average at Test level is 34 batting and 31 bowling. Kallis (56 bat average and 32 bowling) and Watson (37 bat ave and 29 bowling) Ashwin (39 batting and 26 bowling) have far superior stats - again against mostly top 4 teams regularly.

Even spinners Swann (29 bowling average), Harbajhan (32 bowling average) - not even in India's team atm and Ajmal (27 bowling average), are stand alone spinners who are game changers.

I think Shakib is a talented cricketer, no doubt about that. Tamim had still some way to go to be classified as 'world class' though.

We will never know how Shakib would perform in another country's team in different conditions and expectations of winning. It's all speculation.

On the basis that most believe Shakib (and a lesser extent Tamim) to be truly world class, I would expect some consistently outstanding performances at home against West Indies in Test matches.

The only top 5 team England have played a full 5 Test match series with in the last 7 years is Australia. Even the recent battle for the No 1 Test spot with South Africa was a 3 Test match series.

Joe Root averaged 23 on the recent Lions tour to Bangladesh in ODIs. Although that's another format, those are hardly the stats of a 'World Class' opener. Cowan doesn't even average 30 and he's never scored a Test century. Tamim averages 49 against top 5 teams. He averages 63 against England and 58 against India.

Ashwin averages 62 with the ball against top 5 teams and Tahir averages 44. Neither even hold a candle to Shakib's average of 35. Even Lyon averages 37. Only Ashwin has a better batting average but his highest score is only 62. Shakib scored 144 against a Pakistani bowling attack that annihilated England's batting lineup.

I agree Tamim needs to score some more centuries and take his average above 40 to be considered World Class. But I still stand by statement that Tamim could get into the England and Australia teams right now and Shakib could get into the South Africa and Australia teams right now.
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