Should England have <a href=”http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/cricket/england/5228936.stm”>dropped Geraint Jones for Chris Read</a>? It’s caused a lot of <a href=”http://www.cricketworld.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=1484&PN=1″>discussion</a>, but the numbers back up the selectors.<br />

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If we take the last 10 tests* of the current wicketkeepers of the top eight cricket nations, what do we see? In the runs department, Jones is indeed bottom of the list by quite some way, with 100 less runs than the next man, Adam Gilchrist, and a paltry average of 17.9. Sadly, he leads the way with catches: 43. England are true to their word – the keeper needs runs.<br />

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Top of the tree in terms of runs would be Sangakkara after his mammoth 287 against South Africa in the all-time record stand with Jayawardene, but he was selected as a batsman for that match, not keeper.<br />

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Chris Read should be aiming for the middle of this table – an average of 31.5<br />

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<table border=”1″ bordercolor=”#efefef” cellpadding=”2″ cellspacing=”0″><tr><td>Player</td><td>Country</td><td>Mat</td><td>Runs</td><td>HS</td><td>BatAv</td><td>100</td><td>50</td><td>Ct</td><td>St</td></tr> <tr><td>Kamran Akmal</td><td>Pak</td><td>10</td><td>708</td><td>154</td><td>50.57</td><td>3</td><td>2</td><td>32</td><td>4</td></tr> <tr><td>KC Sangakkara</td><td>SL</td><td>10</td><td>758</td><td>185</td><td>42.11</td><td>1</td><td>4</td><td>22</td><td>2</td></tr> <tr><td>BB McCullum</td><td>NZ</td><td>10</td><td>431</td><td>111</td><td>33.15</td><td>1</td><td>2</td><td>24</td><td>3</td></tr> <tr><td>M Dhoni</td><td>Ind</td><td>10</td><td>453</td><td>148</td><td>30.2</td><td>1</td><td>2</td><td>33</td><td>8</td></tr> <tr><td>M Boucher</td><td>SA</td><td>10</td><td>461</td><td>85</td><td>27.11</td><td>0</td><td>4</td><td>37</td><td>0</td></tr> <tr><td>D Ramdin</td><td>WI</td><td>10</td><td>370</td><td>71</td><td>26.42</td><td>0</td><td>2</td><td>22</td><td>0</td></tr> <tr><td>A Gilchrist</td><td>Aus</td><td>10</td><td>352</td><td>144</td><td>25.14</td><td>1</td><td>1</td><td>31</td><td>5</td></tr> <tr><td>G Jones</td><td>Eng</td><td>10</td><td>251</td><td>55</td><td>17.92</td><td>0</td><td>2</td><td>43</td><td>2</td></tr></table><br />

(source: cricinfo.com)<br />

*Last 10 tests is the basic weighting used by the world rankings as well.