Regular readers of this site will be well aware of my great admiration of Mark Ramprakash, and my calls for him to return to the Test side. Happily, the calls are growing ever louder, with Mike Selvey suggesting today he may well be selected for the Sri Lanka tour.
We know he's failed in Tests before. And we know he's 38. But, would Australia obsess over his age and past failings (an irrelevance to winning cricket matches)? Or would they pick the best possible side to win in Sri Lanka?
A number of Aussies - including Damien Martyn, Matthew Hayden and even Steve Waugh - have done superbly after being recalled. Their selectors seem unconcerned by age - for how long have they been labelled 'Dad's Army'? - and just get on with the business of winning. And that is what England now need to do, ending their ridiculous obsession with a) youth and b) the Ashes. Besides, come 2009 Ramps would actually be younger than both Graham Gooch and Alec Stewart were when they ended their careers.
In averaging 100 over consecutive seasons, an unprecedented achievement, especially with England's Test batting far from convincing, his case is irrefutable. And, as well as being more mellow, the crucial fact is that he is actually a better player, technically, than when he last played for England in 2002, having improved his trigger movements to give himself near-perfect balance. His dexterity against spin, as he showed in scoring centuries off Mushtaq Ahmed and Shane Warne, would be invaluable in Sri Lanka.
It is risible to suggest there are six better batsmen in the country. That is all that should matter.