As regular readers will be aware, I have been awarding a Player of the Week during my Championship reviews during the season. With the exception of the wicket-keeper, these are the only players to be considered for my squad for the Team of the Season. Five batsmen, an all-rounder, my wicketkeeper of the year, three pace bowlers and a spinner make up the team.
Englands’ loss was Somerset’s gain. The only double winner of the Player of the Week, he scored 1300 runs at over 60 with four centuries, albeit on a helpful Taunton wicket. He also took an incredible 33 catches. If he’s still on duty for Somerset next season, then they will be in the mix for honours.
A thousand runs, 5 tons and the reason that Hampshire put in a late run to challenge for the title. Particularly in the second half of the season he ran into a rich vein of form which he’ll be looking to continue in to next season.
2000 runs, averaging over 100. The difference between Surrey finishing 4th and being relegated. No other Surrey player managed 1000 runs or averaged over 50. Another awesome season and many people’s player of the year
Got very close to being a double winner as his leg spin bowling backed up his batting prowess. Indeed his bowling average was less than his batting average of nearly 50. A good club man for Yorkshire, he was missed at the end of the season as he went back to Pakistan.
Edges out his club captain Stephen Fleming for the number 5 spot, with 1200 runs and an average of over 90.
The other batsmen to miss out on the final selection were Ben Smith, Mark Stoneman, Travis Birt and Ronnie Irani.
The first player of the week, he scored nearly 800 runs at an average of 46, scoring his maiden ton in the process. With the ball, despite the unhelpful weather this summer, he took 40 wickets (with three 5-fers) at less than 40 to confirm his immense promise as a cricketer. It’s a measure of his ability that some still see this as a disappointing return. The England Lions tour (hopefully) beckons and full recognition won’t be far away.
Rashid beats Alex Gidman to the selection
The only wicketkeeper to average above 50 in either division, he is also the best gloveman in the country. He hit his maiden double hundred this season and was a major factor in Notts promotion this season. He beats off the challenges of Nic Pothas, Tim Ambrose and Paul Nixon.
Although he spent most of the season carrying the drinks for England, he took his frist 5-fer in county cricket and smashed an unbeaten 91 in the same match, taking him to the top of Leicester’s batting averages. As he showed for England, he’s a potential all-rounder with bags of promise and first division cricket with Notts next season should see him progress further.
The only real competition for Mark Ramprakash as player of the season. Cricket365 use his success as a reason that the Championship is a weak competition. To me it shows how much younger bowlers are able to learn from experienced campaigners and the progress of Liam Plunkett and Graeme Onions at Durham will be interesting to see. 80 wickets at just 20 for the season including all ten in an innings, he also chipped in with over 500 runs.
He probably still feels hard done by every time the England team is selected without him, but he is another reaon why Somerset will be a welcome addition to Div 1 next season. 70 wickets at 24 playing half of his matches at Taunton is a great return.
The pace bowlers to miss out were James Harris, Yasir Arafat and Mark Davies
The final winner of the award, he edges out the evergreen Robert Croft by spinning Sussex to the title again. Not as dominant this year as last, he still took 90 wickets at 25