This is the Australian which played in the last Twenty-20 World Cup, where they were dominant and heavily favoured before England ambushed them in the finals.
David Warner, Shane Watson, Michael Clarke (capt), Cameron White, David Hussey, Michael Hussey, Tim Paine, Steven Smith, Daniel Christian, Brad Haddin (wk), Brett Lee, Dirk Nannes, Mitchell Johnson, Nathan Hauritz, Shaun Tait
Now imagine for one moment, that some cricket hating terrorist organization kidnapped the entire squad to jeopardize Australia’s chances. This forced the Aussie selectors to call upon their reserves as well as some players who have retired from the international game – but are still going strong in first class cricket.
Then this is the back-up squad that the Aussies would be able to assemble.
Ricky Ponting, Mathew Hayden, Adam Gilchrist, Shaun Marsh, Andrew Symonds, Callum Ferguson, Brad Hodge, Adam Voges ,Moises Henriques, James Hopes, Ryan Harris, Doug Bollinger, Shane Warne , Travis Birt, Andrew McDonald, Clint McKay, Nathan Bracken
Now consider another imaginary situation: suppose the ACB somehow got convinced by the BCCI’s absurd argument that players participating in the IPL would not be fresh for the World Cup and they decided to drop all such players.
Then this is the team of fresh players that could represent Australia
Ricky Ponting, Michael Clarke, Phil Hughes, Tim Paine, Brad Haddin, Daniel Christian, Callum Ferguson,Travis Birt, Mitchell Johnson, James Hopes, Nathan Haurtiz, Steven Smith, Clint McKay, Nathan Bracken, Ben Hifenhaus
Now imagine the ACB decided to have some fun and also set the world record of having a team entirely made up of left-handers – No international team has ever had such a unique composition. Such a team would create a whole lot of problem for opposition batsmen and bowlers.
The Australian South Paw Eleven would look something like this
Shaun Marsh, David Warner, Mathew Hayden, Phil Hughes, Michael Hussey, Travis Birt, Adam Gilchrist, Simon Katich, Mitchell Johnson, Doug Bollinger, Nathan Bracken, Dirk Nannes, Aaron Heal, Aaron O’Brien ( the last two were amongst the best bowlers in the KFC Twenty-20 Bash and if not for Australia’s plethora of top-class players would have made it to the national reckoning)
Any of these sides could have won the World Cup.
This embarrassment of riches makes me wonder – how difficult is the task of being an Aussie Twenty -20 selector?
On one hand you could simply draw lots to pick the team and still expect them to win – ensuring that nobody blames the selectors. And on the other, you always have to leave out a whole bunch of deserving players – ensuring that the media and the fans have a field day berating the selectors.