Let's pretend the Ashes never happened
Shane Warne, who took a stunning 93 wickets in 15 tests
, nearly 50% more than Flintoff, second on the list, won the Test Cricketer of the Year award
beating out competition from Ponting and Hayden
Obviously Warne deserved to win the award and I'm sure he missed out on the Allan Border Medal only because he doesn't play one-dayers any more. Robert Craddock thinks that Warne won't win ever win the Allan Border Medal
since it is highly unlikely that he will bowl better!
What was astounding was finding Hayden at #3. He scored a total of 1380 runs in 2005
, nearly 1000 of them made after the Oval test
. He looked hopelessly out of touch in the series and I'm sure the only reason he wasn't dropped
was because of the 'TINA' factor. To top it all, he even said that Australia were suffering from a hangover
of winning in India.
Given that the Ashes were the marquee event for 2005 as far as Australian cricket was concerned, his centuries in the Oval test
, the Super Test
and against West Indies and South Africa, cannot compensate for him just not turning up in the Ashes series. He kept getting 30s and 40s in the early part of the year and had to wait for substandard attacks and home conditions before he got going finally.
Him getting third place seems to reinforce my belief that Australia's cricketers want to just forget the 2005 Ashes like a bad dream, hoping that it will go away when they wake up. Certainly Ponting's comments on how Australia only lost two tests in 2005
point in that direction. If they continue to be in denial mode, any amount of ribbing by Tufnell
will have the least effect.
At least this year's winners list (Ponting, Warne and Hussey) featured a bowler, unlike last year
when Clarke won the AB Medal
while Martyn and Symonds were declared test and one-day players of the year.