2nd best, after Bradman ?

cricketnut14

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Jan 13, 2015
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Ponting, G.Chappell or Smith ?

The above 3 IMO are real close and hard to separate and all have claims, in a statistical sense.

Ponting - need I say any more ? Was averaging 60 after 107 tests and did most of his work batting @ 3.

G.Chappell - champion and played an additional 20 unofficial tests (WSC) , averaging 60, with another 6 tons.

It's hard to see Smith finish his test career with a batting average under 50 now.


I'd love peoples views on this.

Or does anyone think someone like a S.Waugh, Hayden, M.Hussey, Border (only others with a 50+ ave) or another player challenges ?
 

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BJK#5

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I will preface this by saying i am only 23 years old so i can't really comment on anyone pre the Ponting era but Smith is the best i have seen.

Statistically he is the best since Bradman and going off the eye test i have never seen someone that feels so impossible to get out, he puts the highest price on his wicket of any superstar i have ever seen. He has made runs in England, Australia, India, South Africa, New Zealand and Sri Lanka.

He maybe needs to maintain it for a little longer before getting the title but if he isn't yet i am pretty sure he will retire the greatest of the modern era.
 

Woody15

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Id say Ponting for now. But its imminent Smith will be the best since Bradman IMO.

Depending on how he carries our team through the Ashes, it may be sooner than I think.

Amazing considering where he has come from in terms of what he was originally selected for.
 

Forward Press

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If he replicates this throughout another away Ashes series he is undisputed second GOAT to Bradman imo. His 144 yesterday reminded the world that they were very quick to write him off after a year out. You will rarely see another innings with as much grit and determination as Smith's.
 

melanChronic

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Something to bear in mind is that if Smith had someone to go with him, he would probably be making even bigger scores. Once he is in that determined mindset he is pretty much impossible to dislodge. Hopefully in next five years or so we can put together a remotely competent batting order around him, he's got a few triples in him I reckon.
 

DAlembert

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I think Greg Chappell was magnificent to watch but so are Ponting and Smith. I doubt Bradman gave people any more pleasure to watch than any of these. I watched Mark Waugh make 35 sublime runs at MCG. Who is number 2 behind Bradman...is Bradman number 1. Wickets have changed bats have changed quality of opposition changed size of grounds . Comparing is a complete waste of time on a generational basis. Enjoy them when you see them.
 

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Blue1980

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Id say Ponting for now. But its imminent Smith will be the best since Bradman IMO.

Depending on how he carries our team through the Ashes, it may be sooner than I think.

Amazing considering where he has come from in terms of what he was originally selected for.
I’d say smith ahead of Punter. Smith is a better player of spin than Punter ever was, and has done the business everywhere in the world.

See how the rest of his career goes, but at this point I’d say smith.
 

Blue1980

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I think Greg Chappell was magnificent to watch but so are Ponting and Smith. I doubt Bradman gave people any more pleasure to watch than any of these. I watched Mark Waugh make 35 sublime runs at MCG. Who is number 2 behind Bradman...is Bradman number 1. Wickets have changed bats have changed quality of opposition changed size of grounds . Comparing is a complete waste of time on a generational basis. Enjoy them when you see them.
Overall averages are roughly similar to what they were in the 30s, give or take a few runs so comparisons can be done.

Of course much will be subjective. Bradmans ridiculous average makes all other discussions moot over who number 1 is, but number 2 is a fair debate.

At the moment I go Smith due to how he’s made runs in the sub continent and still done well when it’s been seaming around
 

Gethelred

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Smith makes batting look easier than Ponting ever did. Ponting was a classical player, with a few technical flaws; he was prolific, and you felt like the bowlers had two options when he was at his best; get him LBW early with the ball nipping back in at his pads/the stumps when he played too straight to a ball a little wider, or bowl a foot and a half outside off and pack the off side field, starving him of the runs he needed to stave off impatience.

Smith is precisely what you'd get if a 4th grade cricketer found a magic lamp and wished to be the greatest batsman in the world without any change in his technique. His is a triumph of eye, timing and shot selection over technique. Last night, if anything, demonstrates how easy it is for Smith to get set; I never once thought he was even approaching his best touch, but never once did I feel him threatened or likely to be dismissed, regardless of what was bowled to him. I never got to see Chappell or Border, but of the players I've seen Smith has it - at his peak versus Ponting's peak - over Ponting.
 

woota

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so what you are saying if smith retired tomorrow, he's outright 2nd ?

I still think longevity counts for a bit, and if he can play say 130 tests with the same impact, then yeah sure.
If he makes it to 10,000 test runs and maintains an average of 60+, that's a feat nobody has ever achieved before. If he does that, he'll be the undisputed #2 batsman ever.
 

woota

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Overall averages are roughly similar to what they were in the 30s, give or take a few runs so comparisons can be done.

Of course much will be subjective. Bradmans ridiculous average makes all other discussions moot over who number 1 is, but number 2 is a fair debate.

At the moment I go Smith due to how he’s made runs in the sub continent and still done well when it’s been seaming around

If you judge strictly by averages then kumar sangakkara is the 2nd best ever (counting only batsman who have made 10,000+ runs). 12,400 runs at an average of 57.40.

By comparison ponting made 13,378 runs at an average of 51.85.
 

Gough

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In terms of sheer elegance it has to be Chappell. If you take out WSC and all the tours that he missed later in his career he would have also left Bradman for dust, and been far closer to his more contemporary rivals in terms of runs scored.
 

Sylvia Saint

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Ponting was a bit overrated IMO.

His career had three distinct stages.

1995-2001: Young, talented, but inconsistent middle order player.

2002-2007: Unbelievable form at #3. As good as you'll ever.

2007-2012: Past his prime, still had the ego to go for every short ball but not the reflexes to match. A walking wicket towards the end.

I know, a five year dominant period is still an epic effort, and he goes down as one of the greats, but I reckon his reputation would have been enhanced if he retired in 2007 with the rest of the invincibles. He averaged 59 then, it finished early 50s. He was way too young to retire at that point, but that's what I think in hindsight.

I'd have Punter behind all of Tendulkar, Lara and Kallis from that era.

Smith has had a similar career trajectory to Punter, but hopefully doesn't fall off a cliff at 32!
 

legend166

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In terms of sustained peak, what Smith is doing now is matching Ponting so we'll have to see what happens from here. Ponting's career had three very distinct phases. Up until mid 2001 he was talented but inconsistent, averaging 43 across 42 matches. From mid-2001 to the end of the 06/07 season he became the Ponting everyone remembers, averaging 71 across 64 matches which would be the best sustained peak of any batsman since Bradman. After the 06/07 Ashes series he fell away pretty significantly, averaging only 40 for the rest of his career. EDIT: Oops, sorry just saw someone mentioned this exact thing.

Smith, from his first century onwards (midway through 2013 Ashes) is averaging 70 across 54 matches. It took him 12 tests to score his first century but has basically dominated since then like no one since Ponting at his peak. He's only 30 now so you think he's got at least 2-3 more years in his prime. If he does this for another 30 tests I think he'll easily be the best since Bradman (and not just Australian batsmen - any country).
 

Sylvia Saint

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In terms of sustained peak, what Smith is doing now is matching Ponting so we'll have to see what happens from here. Ponting's career had three very distinct phases. Up until mid 2001 he was talented but inconsistent, averaging 43 across 42 matches. From mid-2001 to the end of the 06/07 season he became the Ponting everyone remembers, averaging 71 across 64 matches which would be the best sustained peak of any batsman since Bradman. After the 06/07 Ashes series he fell away pretty significantly, averaging only 40 for the rest of his career. EDIT: Oops, sorry just saw someone mentioned this exact thing.

Smith, from his first century onwards (midway through 2013 Ashes) is averaging 70 across 54 matches. It took him 12 tests to score his first century but has basically dominated since then like no one since Ponting at his peak. He's only 30 now so you think he's got at least 2-3 more years in his prime. If he does this for another 30 tests I think he'll easily be the best since Bradman (and not just Australian batsmen - any country).
Two great minds!
 

DAlembert

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Lol yes - Bradman is undisputed at number 1 regardless of any generational differences
Interesting though I wonder if a generation of young men killed in WW1 made a difference. Of course it would have. We could argue all day about the quality and differences of everything...bats wickets grounds players bowlers etc etc. My aunty watched Bradman bat 3 times he made a Blob 4 and a Blob. Historically Bradman will always be regarded as the best like Babe Ruth in US Baseball...it's not who is best that is moot...it's the whole discussion. Easy to favour Smith as of now at no2 because he is the now and he just made 144.
 
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