To see Adil Rashid, Ravi Bopara and Owais Shah represent England in the first one-day international (ODI) against Australia at The Oval last Friday is the inspiration behind this post.
All three have Indo – Pak origins although only Shah (6 Tests and 61 ODIs for England) was born in Karachi, Pakistan.
Like Test players Mark Ramprakash, ‘Monty’ Panesar, Sajid Mahmood and Ali Kabir, Bopara (10 Tests, 42 ODIs) and Rashid (two ODIs) were born in England.
The current Ashes series had a strong South African connection. As many as four in the England Test team — Andrew Strauss, Kevin Pietersen, Matt Price and the debut centurion Ian Trott — were born in South Africa.
In all, 61 overseas-born players from 15 countries – including unlikely places like Peru, Hong Kong, Italy, Germany, Denmark, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Papua New Guinea – have played Test cricket for England.
Here is a list of cricketers born outside UK and Ireland who have represented England at Test level. (Those born in Scotland, Wales and Ireland are not included in this list, for example Wales-born reverse-swing quickie Simon Jones).
Sixteen were born in India, 11 in West Indies, 10 in South Africa and nine in Australia.
AUSTRALIA: Billy Murdoch, John Ferris, Sammy Woods, Albert Trott, ‘Gubby’ Allen, Adam Hollioake, Ben Hollioake, Jason Gallian, Tim Ambrose.
SOUTH AFRICA: Basil D’Oliviera, Tony Greig, Ian Greig, Allan Lamb, Chris Smith, Robin Smith, Andrew Strauss, Kevin Pietersen, Matt Prior, Ian Trott.
WEST INDIES: Lord Harris, Pelham Warner, Roland Butcher, Norman Cowans, Wilf Slack, Gladstone Small, Phillip DeFreitas, Devon Malcolm, Chris Lewis, Neil Williams, Joseph Benjamin.
NEW ZEALAND: Andy Caddick.
INDIA: K.S. Ranjitsinhji (‘Ranji’), Edward Wynyard, Richard Young, Neville Tufnell, Douglas Jardine, K.S. Duleepsinhji (‘Duleep’), Nawab of Pataudi, Sr., Errol Holmes, Norman Mitchell-Innes, George Emmett, Colin Cowdrey, John Jameson, Bob Woolmer, Robin Jackman, Nasser Hussain, Minal Patel.
PAKISTAN: Usman Afzaal, Owais Shah.
ZIMBABWE (formerly Rhodesia): Graeme Hick, Paul Parker.
KENYA: Derek Pringle.
ZAMBIA: Phil Edmonds, Neil Radford.
GERMANY: Donald Carr, Paul Terry.
ITALY: Ted Dexter.
PERU: Freddie Brown.
HONG KONG: Dermot Reeve.
PAPUA NEW GUINEA: Geraint Jones.
DENMARK: Amjad Khan.
Murdoch, Ferris, Woods and Albert Trott had earlier played for Australia. Nawab of Pataudi Sr. Later played for India .
Incredibly, seven overseas-born cricketers from five countries represented England in the first Test against New Zealand at Christchurch in January 1992. They were Hick (born in Zimbabwe), Lamb and Robin Smith (South Africa), Pringle (Kenya), Lewis and DeFreitas (West Indies) and debutant Reeve (Hong Kong). Only four were “home grown” Englishmen — skipper Graham Gooch, Alec Stewart, R.C. (Jack) Russell and Phil Tufnell.
England triumphed by an innings, and retaining the same team for the next Test in Auckland, won by 168 runs. Is there a message here somewhere?
When will Australia include an Asian in their Test line-up? Pakistan-born Usman Khawaja may become the first Muslim to represent Australia in cricket. In 11 first-class matches for NSW the 22-year-old has hit 651 runs at 40.68 with a highest score of 172 not out.
And India-born all-rounder Lisa Sthalekar, 30, has played seven Tests for Australian women, averaging 33.83 with the bat (top-score an unbeaten 120) and 20.23 when bowling.