Hoggard tells England to ignore Ramprakash

Updated: 11 August 2009 18:26 IST

Matthew Hoggard has urged the selectors to forget about Mark Ramprakash and pick a younger candidate to strengthen the batting for the fifth Ashes Test.

Hoggard tells England to ignore Ramprakash

Leeds:

Former England quick Matthew Hoggard has urged the selectors to forget about Mark Ramprakash and pick a younger candidate to strengthen the batting for the fifth Ashes Test.

Ramprakash has been the outstanding batsman in county cricket in recent seasons, joining the select group of players with a hundred first-class centuries to their name.

And on Sunday he bolstered his case for a Test recall at his Oval home ground, where the Ashes finale starts on August 20, with 134 not out for Surrey against Derbyshire in the Second Division of the County Championship.

Ramprakash's latest hundred came as England slumped to an innings and 80 run fourth Test loss to Australia inside three days at Headingley here on Sunday, having been bowled out for just 102 in their first innings.

But the 39-year-old Ramprakash hasn't played for England in seven years and his 52 Tests yielded just two hundreds amidst accusations that, for all his talent, he lacked the right mentality to succeed at the very highest level.

"If you want to go for the out-and-out best batter in the County Championship then he's one of the best batters, but that is taking a backwards step in my view," Hoggard told Sky Sports on Monday.

"He'd be a one-Test wonder, he's not going to play in the future," Yorkshire swing bowler Hoggard, who took 248 Test wickets, added.

"I think he's a very good batter but what does he do when he steps up to the international scene? He's got a very bad track record mentally," Hoggard, an ever-present in England's 2005 Ashes series win, said.

"I don't think he'll be getting selected. They're more likely to go in for Robert Key or Jonathan Trott."

England must win at the Oval to regain the Ashes and, with Ravi Bopara, Ian Bell and Paul Collingwood managing just 16 runs between them at Headingley, attention has focused on possible changes to their batting line-up.

But Hoggard, who played the last of his 67 Tests in New Zealand in March last year, said: "I think they've got to be very careful of ringing too many changes. The 11 that were picked at Headingley were the best 11 in the country for that team and I don't think that's changed too much."

The uncapped Trott was in England's squad at Headingley and Hoggard said: "Maybe there's a bit of pressure on the middle order to score more runs.

"Jonathan Trott's in a rich vein of form and it might be good to get somebody in-form coming in. I might bring Jonathan Trott in for either Ian Bell or Ravi Bopara."

Ramprakash was not selected Monday in an England Lions side mainly made up of promising players, including Trott, to play Australia in a two-day match at Canterbury starting on Saturday.

However, speaking earlier Monday, England national selector Geoff Miller would not rule out a shock Test recall for Ramprakash.

"We'll have a look at it," Miller said. "There's an option. He's not retired from international cricket."

However, the former England off-spinner added: "Test cricket is completely different from county, and the problem we have is deciding whether players can take their domestic form into the international arena. That's always been the case and always will be."



Topics : Cricket Sreesanth
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