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Best of the Rest

2 Safs, 3 Aussies, 3 Lankans, 2 Englishmen & a lone West Indian form the XI India’s players believe are the best of the Rest of the World.

cricket Updated: Dec 31, 2008 22:32 IST

Half the fun of picking a composite team is the arguments and discussions that crop up. When you have a high-powered panel - HT assembled 22 people who are either playing for India or have played for India and hope to get back to the highest level - the fun quotient just goes up, tremendously.

Graeme Smith will be pleased to know he was far and away the most popular choice to lead the team. Kumar Sangakkara was a shoo-in, combining high quality batsmanship with wicketkeeping ability that helped free up a spot. The under-fire Matthew Hayden will be even more glad to know that he has some staunch supporters, including Harbhajan.

Chanderpaul's golden year was rewarded, as he and Hayden beat the prolific Mahela Jayawardene to a spot, while Ajantha Mendis just about fought off competition from Daniel Vettori and Brett Lee for the final bowling spot.

The last year was one where India marched steadily towards the top of the Test table. There will be many of you who don't agree with one choice or another, but one thing no one can deny - this is one formidable unit and will give India a run for their money, as and when they clinch the No. 1 spot.

That's it from us on this front, here's wishing that all of you join the Indian team in having a great 2009!

First Published: Dec 31, 2008 22:30 IST