Best Eleven NOT capped by England
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Posted on Monday, 10th July 2017 -
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In this article we look at the best XI on the county circuit currently to not have been capped by England at senior level for any format.
1. Mark Stoneman
The former Durham, now Surrey opener is someone who is now seriously being spoken about as an England International in the waiting. Scoring runs at ease for Durham over the last few seasons, Stoneman took the decison to move down to the capital and join Surrey where he has began his first season scoring 3 centuries already in county championship cricket at the time of writing this and scoring over 750 runs in total in the longer format. It isn't hard to see why he was being banded as a serious contender for the South Africa series.
2. Varun Chopra
The everpresent opener has been consistent across all formats since the begining of his career. Although he doesn't catch the headlines his opening partners have (William Porterfield at Warwickshire and Alastair Cook at Essex), Chopra has always been up there with some of the countries leading run scorers across all three formats.
3. Steve Mullaney
The Nottinghamshire all-rounder has been a consistent performer across all formats and turning in countless match winning performances with both bat and ball. He seems to be getting better with age learning more about his game all the time.
4. Alex Wakely
The Northants skipper will lead this team, and with the credentials of two Twenty20 title on his CV as well as leading an improving underdog side on a tight budget but maximising potential all the time. Leading from the front at the most important times, for example finals day 2016, he played two match affecting and ultimately match winning innings against Nottinghamshire in the semi final and Durham in the final alongside headline grabbers Ben Duckett and Josh Cobb respectively.
5. Sam Northeast
Another one, like Stoneman who can feel unlucky to not have been called by England at senior level in any format so far during his career. Having been one of Kents' leading run scorers the last few seasons as well as being a young captain so similar to Wakely leading from the front bolstering the middle order.
6. Josh Cobb
One of the most underrated but also frustrating players on the county circuit currently. Cobb has been a crucial member of the Northants' squad since joining from Leicestershire, he has been a key member in the middle order along with Wakely and the likes of Richard Levi and Rob Keogh. Cobb is a player who can turn a game in half an hour with the way he scores. His success has mainly been in the white ball game so far in his career but has also stood up in the longer format. His man of the match heroics in the three twenty20 finals he has won will live long in the memory showcasing his skills with both bat and ball.
7. Steve Croft
The Lancashire captain, like the other members of this side has been a consistent and match winning performer for his county. He was part of the team that won the County Championship for the red rose county as well as currently holding the world record for most consistent Twenty20 matches appeared in without missing a game for the team. Croft will keep wicket in this side, so that coupled with his explosive run scoring will bost the scoring or consolidate if needed depending on the situation. Croft is also quite handy with the ball a situation arises where he needs to take the gloves off.
8. Darren Stevens
The ever green Darren Stevens seems to be getting better and better with age winning and changing games all the time for Kent season after season it came as a surprise when I was researching this article that he had not been capped by England at any level during his long and successful career. He is our all-rounder in this line up.
9. Ollie Rayner
Another player who must feel unlucky to not have been called up by England following an incredible season for Middlesex helping them win the County Championship and being one of their leading wicket takers across all formats. Surely if an Moeen Ali gets injured the tall off-spinner is the next best option?
10. Jack Brooks
Brooks, a stallward of the County game, first with Northants and the last few years with Yorkshire. He has been ever present in the four day team winning multiple County Championship titles with the white rose team and always being at the forefront when it comes to needing to take new ball wickets with his partner in crime Ryan Sidebottom. Brooks takes the new ball and leads the attack in this team.
11. Tim Groenewold
Another surprise considering the success he had early in his career at Warwickshire. Groenewold has been a consistent and hard working bowler first at Warwickshire and Somerset since changing counties a few years ago. He can also add some quick fire runs down the order as well as possibly moving up the order too if the situation needs it. Groenewold will partner Brooks with the new ball.
If you think i've missed anyone off this list who deserves a place or disagree with any of my selections then let me know in the comment section below.