Rahkeem Cornwall has made the headlines with his unorthodox pick of an all-time XI in a recent interview, including six players from the West Indies in his dream team. The all-rounder only chose players who have played in recent times, leaving out all 20th century as well as Indian players.
Rahkeem Cornwall's quirky personality is a known fact in the cricketing fraternity, both among players and the fans. The West Indian all-rounder seems to be the symbol of everything non-conventional, be it his playing style on the field or personality off it. Recently, the world was able to witness yet another instance of the cricketer's unusual thinking method when he was asked to name an all-time XI in an interview with Cricketnmore.
Instead of picking the usual names such as Sachin Tendulkar, Ricky Ponting and Shane Warne, the 29-year-old instead opted to go for players who have plied their trade in the 21st century only. In fact, the amalgamation of his team looks like a blockbuster T20 squad reflective of Cornwall's own hard-hitting playing style.
The openers chosen by him were the Caribbean duo of Chris Gayle and Johnson Charles. While the former is a bonafide cricketing legend, the latter had a rather pale international career playing just 82 games and averaging below 25. To follow them were the batting pair of Kane Williamson and Steve Smith from down under, both of whom are a part of the so-labelled 'fab four' and considered to be the greatest batting talents of this generation.
Next on the list were T20 specialists and all-time West Indian greats in the game's shortest format, Kieron Pollard, Darren Sammy and Andre Russell. The trio have similar playing profiles with their abilities to bowl short stints while going gung-ho with the bat regardless of opposition or circumstance. Pollard and Sammy had the honour of captaining their national sides for relatively long periods and led their teams to great glory on the global stage.
Cornwall's first pick from Asia was the wily Rashid Khan, who despite being in his early 20s has already established himself as a T20 legend. His abilities with both the bat and the ball make him a prized possession for any T20 franchise in the world and if he continues to play with the same success till his 30s, will probably go down with some seemingly unbeatable records in the game's shortest format. Mitchell Starc was the next name to appear on the list, the Australian being one of the most prolific bowlers of recent times and widely considered as one of the greatest swing bowlers of the present era.
Just when a hint of normality seemed to be settling into Cornwall's team, the 6-foot 5-inch heavyweight of the game surprised yet again by picking Pakistani pacer, Wahab Riaz. Even though he was a force to be reckoned with in his prime, the fast bowler never really managed to fulfil his potential. Capping off the team was spinner Sunil Narine, another player who has enjoyed great success in the T20 arena. Notably, Cornwall's team did not include any Indian or English players while featuring six of his countrymen. Eventually, it came to be an unorthodox lineup but certainly a force to be reckoned with especially in limited-overs cricket.