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Thread: What if Graeme Swann was born in a different country?

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    International Debutant DJellett's Avatar
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    What if Graeme Swann was born in a different country?

    I noticed a comment in someone's sig here (can't remember whose) quoting Nasser Hussain in saying words to that effect of "If Swann is the future of spin in this country, we're..." and so it carried on. That quote was dated 1997, roughly 15 years ago - and it prompted a line of thought.

    Swann in his early career was more of a raw talent. His powerful hitting and sometimes sharpish turn caught the eye, and saw him fast-tracked to be in and around the national team around 1999-2000. However after a few years, it didn't seem like he was ever going to realise his inherent potential.

    In a nation with stronger spin stocks, he might well have fallen off the radar altogether; however, with a dearth of quality spinners in England at the time, Swann was granted vast oppurtunities - remaining in the Championship, all the while building his armoury and experience.

    The second part of his career - starting around the time of the move to Notts and their '05 CC win, through until the present, showed us a markedly different side of Swann. His game these days is far more effective, and he wins many battles with his thinking alone. He does not rely on raw skill so much as he does strategy and nous. Far from taking away from Swann, though, I believe this is just as important a trait for a bowler, and particularly a spinner.

    Which made me wonder thusly - if Swann has prolonged (and effectively re-birthed) his career by becoming more of an experienced and thinking player; and he was given generous oppurtunity to develop those attributes, given the natural lack of spinners in England - would he have come so far in his development as a cricketer, were he from another country? Would he have come further, or disappeared altogether?

    I suppose in a smaller cricketing nation, even more deficient in spinners (ie. Windies) he may have had even more chances - but then the case could be made that he would have been over-exposed too young, and never had the oppurtunity to go back and develop a more complete game.

    Conversely, had he been in for example Australia behind Warne, MacGill et al - he may well have already dropped off the radar given lack of oppourtunity, and blown the chance of such a re-creation.

    Throwing it out there - I think England has turned out to be the perfect country for Swann's development - and although granted the obvious benefit of hindsight, you couldn't really plan a career any better to develop a really well rounder character and cricketer - technically and mentally.

    Might be an interesting excercise with other players too - don't know if the question has been asked too often before, please excuse if you have been over this already.
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    International Regular Andre's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DJellett View Post
    I noticed a comment in someone's sig here (can't remember whose) quoting Nasser Hussain in saying words to that effect of "If Swann is the future of spin in this country, we're..." and so it carried on. That quote was dated 1997, roughly 15 years ago - and it prompted a line of thought.

    Swann in his early career was more of a raw talent. His powerful hitting and sometimes sharpish turn caught the eye, and saw him fast-tracked to be in and around the national team around 1999-2000. However after a few years, it didn't seem like he was ever going to realise his inherent potential.

    In a nation with stronger spin stocks, he might well have fallen off the radar altogether; however, with a dearth of quality spinners in England at the time, Swann was granted vast oppurtunities - remaining in the Championship, all the while building his armoury and experience.

    The second part of his career - starting around the time of the move to Notts and their '05 CC win, through until the present, showed us a markedly different side of Swann. His game these days is far more effective, and he wins many battles with his thinking alone. He does not rely on raw skill so much as he does strategy and nous. Far from taking away from Swann, though, I believe this is just as important a trait for a bowler, and particularly a spinner.

    Which made me wonder thusly - if Swann has prolonged (and effectively re-birthed) his career by becoming more of an experienced and thinking player; and he was given generous oppurtunity to develop those attributes, given the natural lack of spinners in England - would he have come so far in his development as a cricketer, were he from another country? Would he have come further, or disappeared altogether?

    I suppose in a smaller cricketing nation, even more deficient in spinners (ie. Windies) he may have had even more chances - but then the case could be made that he would have been over-exposed too young, and never had the oppurtunity to go back and develop a more complete game.

    Conversely, had he been in for example Australia behind Warne, MacGill et al - he may well have already dropped off the radar given lack of oppourtunity, and blown the chance of such a re-creation.

    Throwing it out there - I think England has turned out to be the perfect country for Swann's development - and although granted the obvious benefit of hindsight, you couldn't really plan a career any better to develop a really well rounder character and cricketer - technically and mentally.

    Might be an interesting excercise with other players too - don't know if the question has been asked too often before, please excuse if you have been over this already.
    He'd be a better bloke.

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    International Debutant DJellett's Avatar
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    The fact that guys like Ashley Giles were keeping him out of the team says something. I'm not sure what, but something....
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andre View Post
    He'd be a better bloke.
    Nah, he'd still be a ****, only with a more comical accent.

    Interesting DJ mentions Oz as a place where he may've dropped off the radar; given the current paucity of Australian spinning stocks (even England has never sunk as low as playing Cam White or Steve Smith as the nominal specialist spinner) I think he'd have probably been the incumbent since MacGill gave it away.
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    International Debutant DJellett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoyBrumby View Post
    Interesting DJ mentions Oz as a place where he may've dropped off the radar; given the current paucity of Australian spinning stocks (even England has never sunk as low as playing Cam White or Steve Smith as the nominal specialist spinner) I think he'd have probably been the incumbent since MacGill gave it away.
    No doubt, if he were Australian and the same exact player NOW he would be the outright number 1. What I meant to ponder with the Aus point was - would he still have been around? Having guys like Giles, Batty etc in front, he was always there or there abouts in the England reckoning; so there was always hope, and almost limitless time to realise that hope. Had he been behind Warne, MacGill, Miller etc he may have fallen off the scence for lack of hope.

    Many other unique factors in his development as well - ie many county teams meant there was always a spot (being unlikely to drop out of the top 16 spinners, thus a decent chance of a game - an Aus player needs to be in the top 6-8 to get domestic cricket)

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoyBrumby View Post
    Nah, he'd still be a ****, only with a more comical accent.

    Interesting DJ mentions Oz as a place where he may've dropped off the radar; given the current paucity of Australian spinning stocks (even England has never sunk as low as playing Cam White or Steve Smith as the nominal specialist spinner) I think he'd have probably been the incumbent since MacGill gave it away.


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    inb4 he'd still be playing for England.
    orz

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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent TBY View Post
    inb4 he'd still be playing for England.
    Beaten.

    If he'd been born in South Africa...

















    ...he'd have been the incumbent since Nicky Boje and Paul Adams gave it away
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    Quote Originally Posted by rvd619323 View Post
    Beaten.

    If he'd been born in South Africa...

    ...he'd have been the incumbent since Nicky Boje and Paul Adams gave it away
    Indeed, he'd be 10% of GDP...

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoyBrumby View Post
    Nah, he'd still be a ****, only with a more comical accent.

    Interesting DJ mentions Oz as a place where he may've dropped off the radar; given the current paucity of Australian spinning stocks (even England has never sunk as low as playing Cam White or Steve Smith as the nominal specialist spinner) I think he'd have probably been the incumbent since MacGill gave it away.
    Don't know about "never". Ian Salisbury played a surprising number of matches, and Chris Schoffield was the sole spinner in his two tests... but then it did get a bit random in England in the 90's.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent TBY View Post
    inb4 he'd still be playing for England.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flametree View Post
    Don't know about "never". Ian Salisbury played a surprising number of matches, and Chris Schoffield was the sole spinner in his two tests... but then it did get a bit random in England in the 90's.
    Salisbury's FC record is surprisingly decent, tbf. His inability to find the sixth delivery in an over tho meant he was never able to consistently apply pressure at the highest level.

    Both his & Schofield's selections were obvious cases of Warne envy on our panel's part but they were at least specialist spinners (albeit ones who could bat slightly too); my point with White and Smith is that they're both really batsmen who bowl a bit. An English equivalent would be Chris Nash as the nominal spinner.

    On Schofield, his travails after leaving/getting the arse from Lancs (minor counties cricket and a spell on the dole) shows that whilst 18 counties give English twirlers more chance of a prolonged bash at FC cricket, it's not impossible for internationals to drift out of the pro game. To my way of thinking Swann's spell in the cold was rather more to do with his personality than his cricket. After his 99/00 tour he was never going to play under Fletcher again.

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    Decent sig, that.
    "If that Swann lad is the future of spin bowling in this country, then we're ****ed." - Nasser Hussain, 1997.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DJellett View Post
    I noticed a comment in someone's sig here (can't remember whose) quoting Nasser Hussain in saying words to that effect of "If Swann is the future of spin in this country, we're..." and so it carried on. That quote was dated 1997, roughly 15 years ago - and it prompted a line of thought.

    Swann in his early career was more of a raw talent. His powerful hitting and sometimes sharpish turn caught the eye, and saw him fast-tracked to be in and around the national team around 1999-2000. However after a few years, it didn't seem like he was ever going to realise his inherent potential.

    In a nation with stronger spin stocks, he might well have fallen off the radar altogether; however, with a dearth of quality spinners in England at the time, Swann was granted vast oppurtunities - remaining in the Championship, all the while building his armoury and experience.

    The second part of his career - starting around the time of the move to Notts and their '05 CC win, through until the present, showed us a markedly different side of Swann. His game these days is far more effective, and he wins many battles with his thinking alone. He does not rely on raw skill so much as he does strategy and nous. Far from taking away from Swann, though, I believe this is just as important a trait for a bowler, and particularly a spinner.

    Which made me wonder thusly - if Swann has prolonged (and effectively re-birthed) his career by becoming more of an experienced and thinking player; and he was given generous oppurtunity to develop those attributes, given the natural lack of spinners in England - would he have come so far in his development as a cricketer, were he from another country? Would he have come further, or disappeared altogether?

    I suppose in a smaller cricketing nation, even more deficient in spinners (ie. Windies) he may have had even more chances - but then the case could be made that he would have been over-exposed too young, and never had the oppurtunity to go back and develop a more complete game.

    Conversely, had he been in for example Australia behind Warne, MacGill et al - he may well have already dropped off the radar given lack of oppourtunity, and blown the chance of such a re-creation.

    Throwing it out there - I think England has turned out to be the perfect country for Swann's development - and although granted the obvious benefit of hindsight, you couldn't really plan a career any better to develop a really well rounder character and cricketer - technically and mentally.

    Might be an interesting excercise with other players too - don't know if the question has been asked too often before, please excuse if you have been over this already.
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