Fresh faces for different places
Six experts pick their Test and one-day pretenders
Sunday 11 May 2003
Mark Nicholas (Channel 4 presenter)
Mark Nicholas (Channel 4 presenter)
During the winter, Rodney Marsh told me how impressed he was with Chris Read. There is a substantial case for playing him now. His wicketkeeping is of high quality and his batting has become solid. In the four years since he was last given a go he has worked at his game. Of the batsmen, Mark Wagh of Warwickshire has style and content. Not mentioned as much as his county colleagues, Ian Bell and Jim Troughton, he could come to the fore.
John Bracewell (Gloucestershire coach)
England must change the way they approach one-day cricket if they are to end their barren spell in the World Cup. There are plenty of athletic players who should be put in the team and taken on a winter one-day tournament. It is a myth to say they do no exist. Chris Read certainly deserves a go in the one-day side and Matt Prior of Sussex is also pushing him for that place. Mark Wagh looks as though he has the batting technique to cope at Test level.
Jonathan Agnew (BBC correspondent)
The selectors should have picked Ian Bell for the Test side a year ago and failed in their duty. They should now compensate for that oversight. He has the method and his poor form after being overlooked is a red herring. His temperament was shown by his match-winning effort in the last B & H final. His colleague Jim Troughton should be in the one-day side. He gets on with it, doesn't flap and can become the engine of the one-day middle order.
Clare Connor (England women's captain)
Mark Wagh strikes me as being a correct player with flair. He reminds me a little of Michael Vaughan. Others have been mentioned ahead of him but I think Wagh could add something to the Test middle-order. The one-day team need somebody to replace Andrew Caddick. Kyle Hogg of Lancashire may have the right stuff and Matt Prior of Sussex could push for the wicketkeeping place. James Kirtley should be mentioned in the bowling despatches.
David Lloyd (Sky TV commentator)
Anthony McGrath has taken longer to mature than some of his contemporaries but he has always had promise. He has some of the same strengths as Marcus Trescothick and has now developed into a player of stature. He has been made captain of Yorkshire, and he could have an international future. Vikram Solanki was tried in the one-day team and jettisoned. His shot-making should give him another chance in the one-day side.
Chris Adams (Sussex captain)
There are not that many middle-order batsmen who I would say are ready. You have to err on the side of caution by not building up players too soon. Look at Ian Bell. But Jim Troughton strikes the ball cleanly and would be worth a go in the one-day side. Kyle Hogg is the best young bowler I've seen, not quick but very Angus Fraser-like and I can see him playing Tests if not just yet. The selectors have a tough job.
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