When I tried to pick the HL all-time Jamaica cricket team last November, it stirred some criticism on local sports talk radio. With Test cricket as my guide, I selected Gayle, Rae, Headley, Rowe, Adams, Samuels, Dujon, Holding, Valentine, Gilchrist and Walsh.
That selection involved some hard choices, and on radio some pinpointed the omission of West Indies batsmen Collie Smith and Maurice Foster, a free-scoring giant in regional cricket.
As a track fan first and a general sports fan second, I was out of my crease. So I listened carefully. The same discomforts probably won't hit the all-time World XI football team selected by the well-known publication, World Soccer, in its summer 2013 issue.
Picking all-time teams can be difficult. Rules, playing surfaces, strategy, balls, training and nutrition have all evolved since the game began. Instead of forcing one man to leave his crease, World Soccer assembled a massive multi-national team of its correspondents and other football analysts to select the all-time XI by vote.
They selected Russia's Lev Yashin in goal, Brazilian Cafu, Bobby Moore of England, German Franz Beckenbauer and Paolo Maldini of Italy in defence, Diego Maradona of Argentina, Zinedine Zidane of France, Dutchman Johan Cryuff and Alfredo Di Stefano of both Argentina and Spain in midfield, with Pele of Brazil and Argentine Lionel Messi up front in a 4-4-2 formation.
It's a magnificent line-up. Cafu, Moore, Beckenbauer, Maradona, Zidane and Pele are all World Cup winners, and all but Pele were national team captains. Yashin, a Russian Olympic gold medal winner, was a renowned penalty stopper, while Maldini, Cryuff, Di Stefano and Messi are all household names.
No selection will suit everyone. My own all-time team has Italian Franco Baresi in for Moore, and Moore's World Cup-winning team-mate Gordon Banks in for Yashin. Yet, the World Soccer panel was almost unanimous in its support of Yashin. He got 31 of their total votes, with Banks and Italy's Dino Zoff getting six votes each.
Beckenbauer was a clear choice for central defence with 68 votes, with Moore just edging Baresi 23 to 22.
The other temptation is to pick Ronaldo of Brazil over Messi. Ronaldo might be the game's best pure striker ever. He was rugged and powerful, with dribbling, heading and shooting skills to match the best. The more I think about it, the more I'm tempted to leave the crease again. Underrated by most, he scored goals galore for Brazil, Inter, Barca and Real Madrid and AC Milan.
However, Ronaldo was fourth in the World Soccer voting for forwards behind Pele, Messi and Hungarian legend Ferenc Puskas. The latter was Di Stefano's team-mate in a terrific 1950s Real Madrid side and was a terror for club and country.
Younger fans will be baffled by the inclusion of Yashin, Moore and Di Stefano. They probably haven't even heard of them. That's understandable.
Recently, I heard a caller to a sports call-in programme open his selection of an all-time Barcelona team. His very next move was to clarify that he was picking the best Barcelona players in 'his time', and started in the 1990s.
I heard myself shouting, 'All- time Barcelona without Cryuff?'
The apparently forgotten Dutchman was the on-field messiah of total football, and his delightful passing, shooting and dribbling aided Ajax, Barcelona and Holland. He was probably the best player in the world in the 1970s.
For youthful fans, the World Soccer summer 2013 issue will be worth a read. They'll learn about players they've never seen from people whose job it is to pay attention to the game throughout the years.
Whether you agree with World Soccer or not, you'll concur on one truth. Picking all-time teams isn't easy; whether one man leaves his crease or if he has a big team of experts to guide him.
To make the point, I scrolled down the list and picked the next set of players who got votes. That team, ostensibly the second best of all time, is pretty good too.
Banks or Zoff, Carlos Alberto, Roberto Carlos, Baresi and Daniel Passerella, Michel Platini, Garrincha, George Best, Cristiano Ronaldo, Puskas and the Brazilian Ronaldo make another awesome aggregation. That's no guarantee that the No. 1 team could beat them 10 out of 10.
Choose that team if you like, or better yet, pick your own team. Just don't leave your crease.
Hubert Lawrence has made notes at trackside since 1980.