Top 10 Foreign England Cricketers
For decades the England cricket team has benefited from employing the services of players born elsewhere who could only loosely be described as English at best. Of all those that have worn the national team cap but were not born on these shores who is the best? There is plenty of choice and there will be much debate, but we here at FREEbets.org.uk have picked our top 10.
10. Jonathan Trott
Not the most popular of England’s foreign legion due to his sometimes turgid batting style and overly careful preparation before each ball he faces, but every fan of the national team has enjoyed his run-scoring ability over recent years. Born and raised in Cape Town and even playing for South Africa until under-19 level Trott came to the English game late, but when he did he made some impact.
Making his test debut in a decisive final match of an Ashes series is as tough as it gets and Trott took to the task like a duck to water scoring a century in the second innings to lead England home. He went on to make two more centuries against the Aussies in their back yard in the winter of 2010 and won the Wisden and ICC Cricketer of the Year award in 2011. Averaging over 50 after 34 tests is some achievement and despite his perceived slow play he also became the joint quickest player to 1000 ODI runs after just 21 matches and is now nailed on for selection in both forms of the game.
9. Kumar Duleepsinhji
Born in Kathiawar, India in 1905, Duleepsinhji may have only played 12 tests for England, but what an impact he made during that short time. His whole first class career was in fact only eight seasons long as he was forced to retire through illness, but in that time he compiled some of the game’s best ever set of figures.
Excelling for both Cambridge University and Sussex (scoring 15,485 runs in 205 first class games) brought him to the attention of the England selectors and although his test debut was inauspicious, he rapidly improved from there on in. Averaging 58.52 after 12 tests including a high score of 173 against Australia at Lord’s he will certainly go down as one of the most highly regarded imports in English history.
8. Allan Lamb
Lamby may have had British parents, but he was very much a South African, born in Langebaanweg and starting his cricketing career in the country with Western Province, but with his home nation banned from international cricket, he found global fame with England. He was signed by Northamptonshire in 1978 and after early success was convinced that playing for his new country was the way forward.
His test batting average of 36.09 may not be earth shattering, but he did turn out in 79 tests and 122 ODIs being a fixture in both sides for a decade until his last international appearances in 1992 and his 14 test centuries puts him up with the greats of the English game.
7. Nasser Hussain
Another man with a batting average that won’t sparkle in the history books, but in terms of contribution to the England team he is one of the very best. Born in Madras, Hussain moved to England at an early age and was quickly identified as a star of the future.
He played for England for over 14 years and captained the side in 45 tests, with his 17 wins making him the fifth most successful England captain of all time. His 28 wins as ODI captain also make him the second most successful in that field as well, only behind Michael Vaughan. Again he scored 14 test centuries which is a notable achievement, but it is his captaincy rather than his batting that will live long in the memory.
6. Robin Smith
Another man tempted into the English game due to South Africa’s ban from international cricket, Smith was to be a key man for his chosen national side for the eight years he played for them.
Born in Durban and starting his cricketing life with Natal he moved to England to play for Hampshire in 1982 and first was selected for the national team in July 1988. He made a steady start to his test career but burst into life the following year scoring back to back hundreds against the Australians. His batting average in his 62 tests was 43.67, a very respectable effort and when his international career was brought to an end in 1996 he was still more than capable of performing. Playing 71 ODIs as well, Smith was one of the best batsmen around in the late 80s and early 90s, especially when facing fast bowlers.
5. Tony Greig
An often controversial figure during his playing days but undoubtedly one of the greatest England all-rounders in history, Tony Greig will long be remembered as a stand-out character in the English game. Born in Queenstown he made his first class debut for Border Province at 18-years-old but moved to England and signed for Sussex a year later in 1966.
Greig made his test debut in 1972 and went onto play 58 times for England producing a batting average of over 40 and a bowling average of 32.20 taking 141 test wickets. He also captained the side on 14 occasions, memorably winning a series in India 3-1, a rare achievement indeed for an England captain. His controversial run-out attempt of Alvin Kallicharran and his “make them grovel” comments didn’t do him many favours at the time, but add to the interesting, and ultimately successful history of his career.
4. Ted Dexter
Generally seen as a natural Englishman, Dexter was in fact born in Milan, but despite this obscure cricketing background, went on to be one of England’s great players of the 1960s. His powerful stroke play was his trademark and he accompanied this with some more than useful medium pace bowling.
He scored 4,502 runs in his 62 tests for the national side at an average of 47.89 and picked up 66 wickets along the way. He scored nine centuries, but given that he made 27 50s, it could easily have been many more. He captained the team between 1961 and ’64 winning 9 matches, but it was his individual performances rather than his captaincy that will be remembered, his aggression and power lifting him above the parapet of more sedate players of his day.
3. Colin Cowdrey
One of the great names of English cricket, Cowdrey was born in 1932 in Bangalore in what was then British India but moved to England for education in Kent at an early age. He went on to captain his county and his country and become one of the best batsmen in English history.
His 22 test centuries leaves him level with Geoff Boycott and Wally Hammond at the top of the list and finishing his international career with an average of 44.06 from 114 tests is an incredible performance. Being knighted and made a life peer goes some way to showing just what a contribution Cowdrey made to the English game and few are ever likely to match his acheivements.
2. Andrew Strauss
The opening batsman was born in Johannesburg but moved to England at six-years-old, going on to eventually become one of their most successful captains and batsman of all time. It didn’t always look like this would be his fate after a decline in form saw him lose his test place midway through his career, but thanks to his fierce determination he got back in the fold and led the team to success.
He may not be remembered as one of the most glamorous performers of his day but his 21 test hundreds and 24 wins as captain of the side see his figures stack up with anyone’s ever to play for England. He is also one of only three men to captain England to Ashes wins home and away and in leading his side to the pinnacle of test cricket he has to be seen as one of England’s greatest players.
1. Kevin Pietersen
Perhaps the opposite of some others on this list, but a man who is set to become the most successful foreign import English cricket has ever had. Kevin Pietersen has regularly been described as a selfish cricketer, his spell as captain was something of a disaster and he has only recently returned to the team after some serious ill-discipline, but his batting cannot be argued with.
Averaging 49.48 after 88 tests is something few batsmen in history can claim and being poised on 21 test centuries he looks set to pass the trio leading the way on 22. He has been a match winner for England since coming into the team in 2005, not just in the test arena, but in ODI and t20 contests as well. No matter what people think of him on a personal level, he will go down as one of if not the greatest foreign born player ever to play for England.
Today's Main Tip
Manchester United to win the Champions League at 16/1 with William Hill.
Betfair have enhanced odds for the FA Cup match between Wigan and Man City.
Coral have an offer related to the Cheltenham Festival.
Coral have an offer related to the Cheltenham Festival.
William Hill have a bonus offer related to horse racing.
BetVictor have an offer for insurance against losing accumulator bets.
Ladbrokes have a price offer related to the Cheltenham Festival.
- Top 10 Cricket All-Rounders
- Top 10 Retired Cricketers Who Would Have Been T20 Kings
- 7 Unique things we LOVE about the Ryder Cup
- Top 10 World Cup Humiliations
- Top 10 Boxing Rematches Ending in the Same Result
- Top 10 Players Missing the World Cup
- Top Five FA Cup Final Upsets
- Top 10 Potential Future World Snooker Champions
- Top 10 Mourinho Master Classes
- Top Eight Premier League Title Races
- Top 10 Worst Current World Champions
- Top 10 Team GB Winter Olympic Gold Medal Winners
- Top 8 Valentines Day Sports Stars
- Top 10 Sporting Nicknames
- Top 10 Gaps not filled in the Transfer Window
- Top 10 Chinese Sports Stars
- Top 10 Sporting Whitewashes
- Top 10 footballers to play in North America
- Top 10 Boxers Avenging Defeats
- Top 10 Desperate Aussie Pre-Ashes Mind Games
- Top 10 Uncapped Players that could make the England World Cup squad
- Top 10 Opponents Tyson Fury Can Face
- Top 10 Multi-Sport Sportsmen
- Top 10 England Goalkeepers
- Top 10 Transfer Deadline Day Flops
- Top 10 Cracking Cricketers with Dodgy Debuts
- Top 10 Football Rivalries
- Top 10 Sporting Veterans
- Top 10 Royal Sporting Names
- Top 10 Sporting Debuts
- Top 10 Thrashings in Sporting Finals
- Top 10 Sporting Upsets
- Top 10 UK Open Shock Results
- Top 10 Players to watch at the ICC Champions Trophy
- Top 10 Fights in London
- Top Six Play-Off Heartaches
- Top 10 Moments that ended a sporting era
- Top 10 sportsmen who should retire
- Top 10 Footballers Luis Suarez can feast on next
- Top Eight Grand National Long Shots
- Top Five Heavyweight Contenders
- Top Five Six Nations Climaxes
- Top Five British Europa League Heartbreaks
- Top 10 England Opening Batsmen
- Top Five Champions League Comebacks
- Top Five Welsh Snooker Players
- Top 10 England stars of the future
- Top Eight All-Rounders in world cricket
- Top Seven Australian Open Outsiders
- Top Five Premier League Summer Signings
- Top Eight Premier League Veterans
- Top 10 Football Player Comebacks
- Top 10 England one-cap wonders
- Top 10 World Number Ones
- Top 10 Foreign England Cricketers
- Top 10 Worst Managerial Appointments
- Top 10 Goal Celebrations
- Top Nine Football Stadiums in Europe
- Top Seven Euro 2016 Kits
- Top Five European Championship Goals
- Top Five Iconic UK Sporting Venues
- Top Five Most Controversial Boxers of All Time
- Top Five Formula One Drivers Of All Time
- 6 Typical Cheltenham Festival Goers
- 10 of the Best Managerial Sackings
- Top 10 British Boxing Grudge Matches
- Top 10 Unlikely Masters Champions
- Top 10 Greatest Manchester Derbies
- Top 10 Relegation Escapes
- Top England ODI XI of All-Time
- Top 10 Greatest FA Cup Finals of All-Time
- Top 10 Clay Court Tennis Players of the Open Era
- Top 10 Champions League Finals
- The 9 Greatest England v Scotland Matches
- Top 11 Undefeated Streaks in Boxing History
- The 8 Greatest Lions Victories
- The 14 Worst Transfers in Premier League History
- Top 10 Premier League Bargains
- Top 7 Premier League One Season Wonders
- 11 Best Premier League Opening Day Matches
- 7 Best Premier League Debut Campaigns
- Top 10 Upsets in Boxing and UFC history
- Top 7 Football Shirts of All-Time
- 10 Greatest American Tennis Players of the Open Era
- Top 5 Current Pound for Pound Boxers
- Top 10 Greatest T20 players in history
- 11 Greatest victories for English teams in the Champions League
- Top 10 Darts Players of all Time
- 9 Greatest Liverpool vs Manchester United games of the Premier League era
- The 15 Greatest British Heavyweight Boxers in History
- The 12 Greatest South Americans in Premier League history
- Top 10 Individual Ashes Performances
- 10 worst England players ever to make a World Cup squad
- 10 Worst January transfer window signings in Premier League history
- 9 Best January transfer window signings in Premier League history
- 14 UFC fights we want to see in 2018
- Top 10 British boxers that could become world champions in 2018
- 10 uncapped players that could make the England World Cup squad
- Top 10 Craziest Premier League Players
More videos »
If you fancy a break from the serious side of betting, take a look at our Topical Feature List for a bit of a giggle.Click Here To View The List »
View our latest sports articles in our betting blogRead Our Blog »