This article first appeared on the BBC's 606 forum on the 18th of February 2009.
There was widespread anger and disappointment today after India’s Sachin Tendulkar came first-equal on the ICC’s recently published All-Time Worst Batsmen list. This controversy comes a month after their All-Time Best Batsman list was slated for having Tendulkar as low as 26th.
“This does not necessarily mean he is the worst batsman in the history of the game,” an ICC spokesman said. “The rankings give an indication of how players performed across their entire lifetimes, and the simple fact is that all batsmen were a bit rubbish during the first few months of life and as such they are all joint-equal in first place. It does not give a full picture of those players who were consistently poor at Test level. People need to understand what the list shows and how it needs to be interpreted”.
But many observers remain unconvinced. “I am appalled at the ICC’s methods of devising the worst batsman” raged Kapil Dev. “It is disappointing to see Sachin so high on this list. To have him alongside the likes of Atherton and Border isn’t right, but as bad as Chris Martin? You’re having a laugh”.
However, there was no such controversy with the All-Time Worst Bowlers list where, despite the same methodology being applied, Peter Such came out on top.