2nd best, after Bradman ?

greatwhiteshark

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The caveat is that these types of lists and comparisons apply to test cricket only. The game has evolved since bradman's time and the best limited overs batsman is de villiers by a mile, who we can't compare to bradman in the shortened versions of the game because they didn't exist in bradman's time.
There is no caveat as cricketers are judged and remembered long term by what they do in test cricket. You can now make lots of money slogging in 50 or 20 over cricket but you will not be rated as a great batsman unless you perform in test cricket. That’s just the way it is.
Chris Gayle has been a great short format player, some people call him a star yet he wouldn’t make the top 2 greatest West Indian test sides.
 

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Herne Hill Hammer

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Sutcliffe averaged 70 until his Ponting like decline

People talk about the advantages batsmen have these days which are many true but the amount of anyalsis that goes into working out where a batter scores runs/struggles is a science now not a gut feel. With the hundreds of hours of Smith footage and they still can't work out a weakness says a lot.
As an opening bowler, I used to only play against the majority of opponents once a year, unless we met in finals, and the good ones, you knew exactly where they scored their runs and you remembered it and most of your team mates remember it.

If it was someone new, if they were able to bat for long enough, you worked it out pretty quickly.

It was all well and good to know where they scored and what weakness they may have, it was another to execute it.
 

Herne Hill Hammer

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There is relativity and there is broad conjecture. Projections almost always never work in a uniform line. Otherwise all long term economic forecasts would turn out true and Japan which was one of the best performing economies in the 70s wouldn't have crashed only a decade later.

Relativity is not even uniform across a decade. Take Federer's career for example. He won 16 out of his 20 grand slams before Nadal and Djokovic turned 25, destroying and swatting away his opponents with an air of invincibility. There was Federer and then there was everyone else. If he had retired then, people would be making arguments about how Nadal and Djokovic might be good and greats in their own right but not even close to being near Federer's quality. When the level of competition isn't constant even across a decade, how can one assume it would remain a constant across a century. Again, that would be a huge assumption.

I reiterate that I would always consider amateur and professional eras of cricket as separate and Bradman was undoubtedly the best in the amateur era. Would he have been a great if he were born in the modern era? No doubt about it. Would he have still been irrefutably the GOAT batsman dominating his peers in similar fashion, I'm not so sure.
Does that mean that only cricket records, post World Series Cricket in the late 70s count?
 

Suspense

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https://www.smh.com.au/sport/cricket/between-you-and-me-ponting-isnt-our-second-best-20121201-2ao4p.html

A 7-year-old article now - but still an interesting data point when comparing G Chappell to Ponting.



Rather than comparing Test Averages across eras - this table focuses on comparing to Australia's overall batting average in that era. Arguably, this statistic accounts for variables that are unique to each era (pitches, bowling lineups, protective gear etc.).

% Difference:
- Bradman 155% higher
- G Chappell 60% higher
- Border 51% higher
- Murdoch 49% higher
- Harvey 44% higher
- Trumper 40% higher
- S Waugh 34% higher
- Ponting 32% higher

As also noted in the article, these figures don't include the WSC SuperTests - for which G Chappell averaged 54.42 - which was 100% higher than that of his Australian contemporaries at the time.
 
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Andrew Mc

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Do those "team averages" include the player in question? It's hard to tell, even from the article. Just for interests sake - the point the article makes is still a good one.
 

Howard Littlejohn

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https://www.smh.com.au/sport/cricket/between-you-and-me-ponting-isnt-our-second-best-20121201-2ao4p.html

A 7-year-old article now - but still an interesting data point when comparing G Chappell to Ponting.



Rather than comparing Test Averages across eras - this table focuses on comparing to Australia's overall batting average in that era. Arguably, this statistic accounts for variables that are unique to each era (pitches, bowling lineups, protective gear etc.).

% Difference:
- Bradman 155% higher
- G Chappell 60% higher
- Border 51% higher
- Murdoch 49% higher
- Harvey 44% higher
- Trumper 40% higher
- S Waugh 34% higher
- Ponting 32% higher

As also noted in the article, these figures don't include the WSC SuperTests - for which G Chappell averaged 54.42 - which was 100% higher than that of his Australian contemporaries at the time.
What that would do is penalise players who played in stronger eras and advantage those who played with batting line-ups that, like currently, are otherwise somewhat on the dismal side.
 

Suspense

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Do those "team averages" include the player in question? It's hard to tell, even from the article. Just for interests sake - the point the article makes is still a good one.
I would assume so. I don't have the source data.

What that would do is penalise players who played in stronger eras and advantage those who played with batting line-ups that, like currently, are otherwise somewhat on the dismal side.
No doubt - as I said - just another data point to consider. The article states that this is offset by the notion that it is harder to perform when the rest of your team underperforms. While that is true in terms of team Win / Loss - I wouldn't necessarily say it accounts for an individual's pure run-scoring ability.
 

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Present Not Past

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If I could bring two batsmen back to play the third test I would have Bill Ponsford to open with Bradman coming in at 3.
Would love to see a partnership of 400 between these two greats.
 

Ishikawa

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There is no caveat as cricketers are judged and remembered long term by what they do in test cricket. You can now make lots of money slogging in 50 or 20 over cricket but you will not be rated as a great batsman unless you perform in test cricket. That’s just the way it is.
Chris Gayle has been a great short format player, some people call him a star yet he wouldn’t make the top 2 greatest West Indian test sides.
A lot of ignorance out there about how good Gayle's test career is (and you never know, may continue to be).

103, yes 103 test matches at an average of 42.
Two triple centuries and a double.
Centuries all over the world.

But it's easier to regurgitate tabloid press about he's the devil to all cricket history so lets just go with that anyway :).
 

Pippen94

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That team seems to be stacked with older generation players...all who have claims I guess.
[/QUOTE]
Australia has produced a better all rounder since?
 

DAlembert

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There is no caveat as cricketers are judged and remembered long term by what they do in test cricket. You can now make lots of money slogging in 50 or 20 over cricket but you will not be rated as a great batsman unless you perform in test cricket. That’s just the way it is.
Chris Gayle has been a great short format player, some people call him a star yet he wouldn’t make the top 2 greatest West Indian test sides.
Aaron Finch probably our best current example.
 

DAlembert

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That team seems to be stacked with older generation players...all who have claims I guess.
Australia has produced a better all rounder since?
[/QUOTE]
Arguably Not. We have produced better No 6 batsman however. My all rounder is batting at 7 or 8. Especially if Gilchrist is my keeper. In that side I cannot wear that Ian Healy is our Keeper.
 

greatwhiteshark

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A lot of ignorance out there about how good Gayle's test career is (and you never know, may continue to be).

103, yes 103 test matches at an average of 42.
Two triple centuries and a double.
Centuries all over the world.

But it's easier to regurgitate tabloid press about he's the devil to all cricket history so lets just go with that anyway :).
What a load of crap, no one is saying he is not a good cricketer, he is not the star you clearly think he is.
 

PhatBoy

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There is no caveat as cricketers are judged and remembered long term by what they do in test cricket. You can now make lots of money slogging in 50 or 20 over cricket but you will not be rated as a great batsman unless you perform in test cricket. That’s just the way it is.
Chris Gayle has been a great short format player, some people call him a star yet he wouldn’t make the top 2 greatest West Indian test sides.
Don’t be so sure. One thing West Indies haven’t had a huge abundance of is openers.

Haynes and Greenidge were a mighty combination but Roy Fredericks is the only other one that comes readily to mind of specialist openers - Conrad Hunte has a better average than Gayle from a fairly small sample size, though Haynes and Fredericks don’t
 

DAlembert

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One thing is for sure and that the different eras have produced different Nos. Bradman is an outlier in any generation. However players these days are playing a LOT more Test Matches so the data sets are bigger. If you are looking for the best Team of players who have played say 80 Tests Bradman does not even get a mention does not qualify. Browsing through the averages you can see especially in Australia's case that the modern player have higher averages. Once 40 was the benchmark I think you could argue 50 is now the benchmark. Drop in wickets in Australia have been good for batting averages. Once it used to be green top Brisbane. Bouncy Perth . Low and slow Melbourne. Road Adelaide . Spinning Sydney (once a green top). So variation and different skills required at each venue. Now all the same within a slight margin...good for batting. Averages are higher. Interesting you look at England's batting stats and still generation past players dominate...ie More ball movement on pitches that vary more meaning the modern English batsman does not get the advantage Aussies do.(Better Weather Obviously in Oz.) There is a lot more to evaluating players than just stats that's for sure!
 

PhatBoy

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If stats were a total irrelevance and I just went on quality of innings played and what I see visually, I would say that Lara and De Villiers were the two best I’ve seen, Kallis possibly there as well but when you begin to apply more context he slips off. Hard to argue with Tendulkar as well to be fair but he was more the technician like Kallis than the ‘adapt to almost any situation’ freaks that De Villiers and Lara were.

But sheer weight of runs in all circumstances has to have Smith up there.
 

WatsamattaU

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It’s fair enough to say Bradmans the best ever, but I don’t think the margin would be as great as the numbers suggest.

No chance Bradman averages 99 today with the busy schedule, video analysis, supremely fit bowlers who don’t smoke during the drinks break, and world class fielding.
 

ChampRevesby

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It’s fair enough to say Bradmans the best ever, but I don’t think the margin would be as great as the numbers suggest.

No chance Bradman averages 99 today with the busy schedule, video analysis, supremely fit bowlers who don’t smoke during the drinks break, and world class fielding.
Thats why you can only compare people in their day not the modern day. If you had an equivalent Bradman talent today instead of then he would be just as good.
 

woota

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If stats were a total irrelevance and I just went on quality of innings played and what I see visually, I would say that Lara and De Villiers were the two best I’ve seen, Kallis possibly there as well but when you begin to apply more context he slips off. Hard to argue with Tendulkar as well to be fair but he was more the technician like Kallis than the ‘adapt to almost any situation’ freaks that De Villiers and Lara were.

But sheer weight of runs in all circumstances has to have Smith up there.
Kallis and Tendulkar are the best if you are looking at career stats.

De Villiers and Lara are the best if you are actually watching them bat/witnessing extraordinary ability.
 

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