Former English Cricketer Matthew Fleming named his all-time XI through popular YouTube channel Lord’s Cricket Ground.
The team he named included three each from Australia and England, two from the West Indies and one each from Sri Lanka, Pakistan and India.
Accordingly, Fleming named Australia’s Matthew Hayden and India’s Rahul Dravid as his opening batting pair. He said about the opening pair,
“Number one, Matthew Hayden, probably the most intimidating opening batsman that certainly that I had to bowl out.”
“I’ve asked Rahul Dravid if he’d open the batting rather than bat at number three. Not known as the Wall for nothing If in modern-day cricket, if you had to have someone to bats your life, it would probably rile.”
Former England captain Joe Root, the only batsman of the current era to feature in his eleven, was named as the number three batsman.
“At number three, because I want to have someone from the current set up. I’ve gone for Joe Root, a unique batsman, a man who can connect with the crowd, which is incredibly important, but also a man who can play in every format of the game.”
He also named West Indies legend Brian Lara as number four. Fleming had this opinion about him.
“Number four is another left-hander and the man who hit me out of two test grounds, that’s Brian Lara. He was destructive, brilliant, impish, genius.”
England’s Colin Cowdrey was named as the number five and captain of his team. Fleming explained the reasons for naming Colin Cowdrey.
“Number five and captaining My all-time eleven is Colin Cowdrey. And the reason I’ve gone for him is, without him, I wouldn’t have been playing cricket at Kent. He was my mentor, he was a hero of mine. And also he was a fundamental in creating the spirit of cricket, something in which I believe passionately and which is so central to the MCC.”
He then added Australia’s Adam Grillchrist and England legend Ian Botham to his all-time XI. Fleming had this opinion about both of them.
“I’ve gone for Adam Gilchrist. Again, a man who embraced the spirit of cricket, a genius who redefined the role of the wicketkeeper-batsman.”
“Number seven, England’s greatest all-rounder, Ian Botham, a brilliant all-rounder, but the only proviso is no mullet haircut.”
His bowling line-up consisted of two world-class fast bowlers and two world-class spinners. He said,
“Number eight. I’ve gone for the person who I thought was one of the most talented and hardest people to face and also to bowl at, and that’s Wasim Akram, an absolute warrior of a cricketer.”
“At number nine, I’ve gone for my first spinner, and that is Shane Warne, a man who defines spin bowling in our generation.”
“I’ve gone for Curtly Ambrose. To have a West Indian fast bowler in your world eleven seems to me a pretty obvious thing to do. He was a gentleman, he had amazing stamina, great skill, huge pride, and passion, bold, tightly took wickets. I mean, he had everything.”
“And then number eleven, I’ve gone for another spinner. Actually, I’m going to play two spinners because I pick Muttiah Muralitharan, who I think represented a nation with such extraordinary pride and skill. What an extraordinary man was an extraordinary bowler.”