The ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 begins on February 14 when New Zealand takes on Sri Lanka in the tournament opener in Christchurch. With less than two months to go, ICC has launched Your Greatest XI, which will allow fans a unique chance to pick their Greatest All-Time Cricket World Cup XI from the previous 10 editions of the event.
The ICC database consists of over 100 of the greatest World Cup players of all-time. A photo and a short Pen Profile that describes their World Cup record and their memorable impact at the event is available for each player. The ICC also lists detailed World Cup statistics for each of the players.
The players fall under four different categories—batsmen, bowlers, all-rounders, and wicketkeepers. Each XI you choose should feature at least two batsmen, one all-rounder, one wicketkeeper, and two bowlers.
And if fans share their team on social media, they stand to be in with a chance to win exclusive World Cup merchandise with dozens of exclusive pieces of memorabilia being drawn for those who use the hashtag #CWCGreatestXI on Twitter, Facebook or Google+.
The fans aren’t the only ones who will be participating in this. Several cricketing legends across the world will pick the greats they think should make the Greatest XI, and these will be shared on the ICC Web site.
Matthew Hayden, the former Australian opener, was the first one to do so. His pick includes four Australians – Adam Gilchrist, Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath and Ricky Ponting, who is also the captain of the side.
Apart from Warne, Muttiah Muralidaran, ODI cricket’s leading wicket-taker with 534 scalps, is the other spinner in the team, which has Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis, Pakistan’s famed new-ball duo, to accompany McGrath in the seam bowling department.
Gilchrist is Hayden’s wicketkeeper, while Virender Sehwag is Gilchrist’s opening partner. The rest of the batting wears a solid look, with Ponting, Sachin Tendulkar, Brian Lara and Jacques Kallis, four of ten batsmen who belong to the 10,000-run club in ODI cricket, making up the top/middle order.
Kallis is the only all-rounder in the team.
Hayden’s All Time Greatest XI
Adam Gilchrist (Australia) (wicketkeeper)
Virender Sehwag (India)
Ricky Ponting (Australia) (captain)
Sachin Tendulkar (India)
Brian Lara (West Indies)
Jacques Kallis (South Africa)
Shane Warne (Australia)
Wasim Akram (Pakistan)
Waqar Younis (Pakistan)
Muttiah Muralidaran (Sri Lanka)
Glenn McGrath (Pakistan)