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Thread: Why so less medium pace spin bowlers??

  1. #31
    State Vice-Captain karan316's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by veteran-80s View Post
    Perhaps you are asking about the type of bowlers that you had during the era of uncovered pitches - Bobby Appleyard, Sid Barnes, Derek Shackleton. The only recent such bowler that clicks is the now-banned Pakistani bowler Muhammad Asif who would start bowling faster - touching 130kph odd but during his best spells would bowl around 120 kph and cut and seam the ball prodigiously. Again, he was not entirely in the category of Appleyard and the likes as he cut the ball rather than spin it.

    Chris Harris of New Zealand used to bowl in such a manner, bowling quickish leg-breaks. Sajeeva DeSilva, the former Sri Lanka medium pacer, bowler such deliveries in some tests, more markedly in the Asian Championship Final at Dhaka in 1999 against Pakistan with limited success.

    The advent of covered pitches has ended this type of bowler. However, the same was predicted for finger-spinners as well and they did struggle but managed to hold their own. A genuine medium-paced spin bowler could still be a handful but the momentum seems to be against this type of bowling and has been so for a while.
    But there is still a very good chance of such bowlers succeeding, especially in the limited formats where the batsmen can't just play everything cautiously.
    Is this your homework Larry?

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by karan316 View Post
    But there is still a very good chance of such bowlers succeeding, especially in the limited formats where the batsmen can't just play everything cautiously.
    I concur. In fact, why would they not not succeed in tests? Consider this scenario - a medium-paced leg-spinner could be a testing proposition in Austaralia because of the bounce and would be a real handful on a raging turner in India. You have such cases - Anil Kumble was quicker than most spinners. Shahid Afridi was really tough for spin-masters like Tendulkar and the likes at Bangalore in 2005. If you have a bowler with a Chris Harris or Gavin Larsen like run-up and bowls quickish spinners, expect the short-leg/silly-point fieldsmen to come into play. Bhagavat Chandrashekhar was a classic example and a pretty modern one too. Anil Kumble as well.
    karan316 likes this.

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by GuyFromLancs View Post
    As someone who bowls medium pace, I find that it's incredibly useful at frustrating and confusing even very decent batsmen early on in their innings. But as soon as they adjust, the party's over and you need to be brought off for the quicks again.

    But it is sad to see it somewwhat diminished as an art in tests. On a surface that gives something back, it's a real test of technique.
    I used to give the ball a real twist as a variation for the leg-spinning slower ball. I would not use the two smaller fingers at all. The bigger the rip, the longer would the ball stay in the air, at times, virtually hanging up there as the batsman waited for it till eternity. It would pitch at the most perfect spot 99% of the time and would invariably bowl the batsman, off-stump, if he was going anywhere across the line (which was often the case when playing backyard/street cricket). The problem was that you could only do it with a taped tennis ball or any such ball which offers good grip while being light as the normal cricket ball's weight makes it impossible for the wrist to impart such torque.

  4. #34
    State Regular GuyFromLancs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by veteran-80s View Post
    I used to give the ball a real twist as a variation for the leg-spinning slower ball. I would not use the two smaller fingers at all. The bigger the rip, the longer would the ball stay in the air, at times, virtually hanging up there as the batsman waited for it till eternity. It would pitch at the most perfect spot 99% of the time and would invariably bowl the batsman, off-stump, if he was going anywhere across the line (which was often the case when playing backyard/street cricket). The problem was that you could only do it with a taped tennis ball or any such ball which offers good grip while being light as the normal cricket ball's weight makes it impossible for the wrist to impart such torque.
    They youth teams in my area all started taping tennis balls when the Warne-fever set in. Every other English kid wanted to be Shane Warne.
    World XI Since 1990 -

    1. Gooch 2. Dravid 3. Ponting 4. Tendulkar 5. Lara 6. Kallis 7. Gilchrist 8. Akram 9. Warne 10. Ambrose 11. McGrath


  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by GuyFromLancs View Post
    They youth teams in my area all started taping tennis balls when the Warne-fever set in. Every other English kid wanted to be Shane Warne.
    In Pakistan, it has been there since the mid-1980s. Before that, tennis ball matches would be played on roads/streets on weekends and to facilitate 'new ball' bowlers, the pitch would be sprinkled with a bit of water to help the ball zip through. At times, they would take a cigarette lighter and burn off the 'fur' at times, completely and on other occasions, half of it. In windy conditions, the half-burned balled swung a lot. Any West Indian friends over here would concur because that is what Joel Garner and Co. used to do when playing beach cricket.

    Anyway, taped tennis balls or those lightweight replica practice balls can make that twisty leg-spinner work. You cannot do that with a real cricket ball. It puts immense strain on the wrist if you try to land it accurately.

  6. #36
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    Surely accuracy is really the big factor here, and really what made Warne so great. If you can consistently land it in the same spot bowling fast spin then you could be a handful but if you land it anywhere then whats the point?

    Might seem an obvious statement, but bowling leg-spin is difficult enough so adding in a run up. Really no surprise barely anyone does it.

  7. #37
    Cricketer Of The Year Agent Nationaux's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by veteran-80s View Post
    In Pakistan, it has been there since the mid-1980s. Before that, tennis ball matches would be played on roads/streets on weekends and to facilitate 'new ball' bowlers, the pitch would be sprinkled with a bit of water to help the ball zip through. At times, they would take a cigarette lighter and burn off the 'fur' at times, completely and on other occasions, half of it. In windy conditions, the half-burned balled swung a lot. Any West Indian friends over here would concur because that is what Joel Garner and Co. used to do when playing beach cricket.

    Anyway, taped tennis balls or those lightweight replica practice balls can make that twisty leg-spinner work. You cannot do that with a real cricket ball. It puts immense strain on the wrist if you try to land it accurately.
    Some really interesting observations. And why Pakistan doesn't produce good new ball bowlers anymore.
    Quote Originally Posted by BoyBrumby View Post
    Yeah, look, it gives me a pain deep inside my uterus to admit it, but it's Ajmal until such time as we get a working throwing law again.
    Never in a million years would I have thought Brumby to admit this!!!!!!

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Nationaux View Post
    Some really interesting observations. And why Pakistan doesn't produce good new ball bowlers anymore.
    Tape-ball cricket is amateur hobby cricket. It does not affect skill as much as it affects the bowler's mindset. For starters, there are no LBWs in this form of cricket and a lot of stress is placed on bowling dot balls because they play 8-10 over games, the stress is not on getting batsmen out but to get dots. Very often, you'll find right-arm fast bowlers going round the wicket to hit batsman on the legs so that they don't score runs. When I played in the 1980s and 1990s and occasionally led teams too, they actually fired me from the team because my stress was on getting teams out. So in the end, I challenged my own team and brought along a team of my friends with whom I played cricket of a very different kind. We actually shot them out for 8, all batsmen either bowled or caught behind or in the slips - those who play tape-ball cricket would tell you slips are redundant. But I myself held three catches, two of which I allowed to come on to my chest and then caught them off the rebound. My friends just used the test-match style approach that they did at school and my old team members were just not ready for it.

    Coming back to the Pakistani bowlers, the good ones have always been good new ball bowlers. The only difference was that they were good with the old ball too which, in the 1980s and 1990s was a taboo.

    The current demise, in my humble opinion, is part of a cycle similar to the one Pakistan faced in the 1960s when Mahmood Hussain, Fazal Mahmood and Khan Mohammad retired and Pakistanis won just two home tests over New Zealand over a period of a dozen years. What compounds the problem is the absence of international cricket. Although Pakistani fans would tell you they are great, the current lot, Junaid Khan and the rest, are only decent bowlers at best. If they had people like Imran, Wasim and Waqar available, they would be missing in action for good. Pakistanis played a good one-day bowler, Rao Iftikhar Anjum for a good number of years and he was a far better proposition than the likes of Sohail Tanvir. However, we can see the change in mindset: Sohail Tanvir with his 125kph bowling and no swing, is likely to contain more in Pakistanis' view than Rao Iftikhar who was a proven wicket-taker.

    On the domestic front, Pakistanis use domestically produced cricket balls and not Kookaburra ones. The local balls are harder (making them good for reversing) and aid seam more than swing when new. So if the wickets don't help, you see huge scores in Pakistan cricket. However, for a while, they started leaving a lot of grass and the bowlers simply did not have to try hard enough.

    Anyway, this is a long topic and we can discuss it some other time.

  9. #39
    International Captain hendrix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by veteran-80s View Post
    Although Pakistani fans would tell you they are great, the current lot, Junaid Khan and the rest, are only decent bowlers at best. If they had people like Imran, Wasim and Waqar available, they would be missing in action for good.
    I dunno, noone is going to convince me that Jimmy Anderson, Stuart Broad and Graeme Swann are truly great bowlers, but they got their team to number one. Saeed Ajmal is a truly great bowler, and Junaid, Mohammed Irfan and (maybe) a returning Amir would probably be up there with SA as the strongest attack in world cricket.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hendrix View Post
    I dunno, noone is going to convince me that Jimmy Anderson, Stuart Broad and Graeme Swann are truly great bowlers, but they got their team to number one. Saeed Ajmal is a truly great bowler, and Junaid, Mohammed Irfan and (maybe) a returning Amir would probably be up there with SA as the strongest attack in world cricket.
    From what I have seen over last 30-35 years,

    Jimmy Anderson - not a great bowler but a very good one; I think credit is due when he delivers in India and Australia as well.
    Stuart Broad - a decent bowler in favourable conditions
    Graeme Swann - a very good bowler, perhaps one of the best off-spinners of modern era remembering that post-1970s, only Harbhajjan Singh, Saqlain Mushtaq and may be Saeed Ajmal could fall in that category. He has won you games in India (outbowling Indian spinners in India is no joke) and South Africa etc. Very, very underrated. Muralitharan is not an orthodox spinner.

    Junaid Khan - not so good.
    Mohammad Irfan - made his debut a decade too late. He will end up as a decent bowler at best.
    Mohammad Amir - exceptional talent. Don't pin your hopes on his revival though. Five years without cricket at such a young age is not a good sign. Had he and Asif continued, the Pakistanis would have had the most versatile attack in the world.

    The point to note here is that not everyone is going to be the leader of the pack. Since you come from New Zealand, I remember Ewen Chatfield of New Zealand who was a very good bowler but only in the support role. Similarly, Junaid Khan can be a very good bowler but to expect him to lead an attack to wins is simply not on. Irfan too can be a very good support bowler. Umar Gul, when he started, was playing second fiddle to Shoaib Akhtar, Mohammad Sami and Shabbir. His record early on was exceptional. Then he got injured and found that Sami was forced to lead a helpless attack with Shabbir's career finished and Shoaib not bowling at all. Suddenly he was asked to lead an attack and his performances went downhill. The same happened with Sami.

    The point is that it is for captains to identify the talent, ability and personality of the bowler and ask him to fulfill that particular role.

    Imran Khan was very good at it. He would take himself off denying himself easy wickets and instead bring on an embroynic Wasim Akram to get the last wickets so that his confidence could go up. But again, Akram always had it in him to lead attacks. Aqib Javed had it too but was not adequately skilled. Sami had a lot of skill but was always a follower, not a leader.

    Coming to the English XI, from what I have seen, Broad has leadership traits but lacks both skill and brain for now. Both of these he can grow in with time. From the 1980s and 1990s, you had Graham Dilley who was basically a good support bowler but was forced to lead the attack because of dearth of fast-bowling talent. He did so manfully for a while but was not meant for that.

    I think the smartest English bowler I ever saw was Angus Fraser. He knew his role and limitations and was crystal clear about it. Even when forced to step up, he seemed to let his captains know not to expect too much but would then outdo himself from whatever support role he had to play. To top it, he was a thorough gentleman of a very gentle disposition.

  11. #41
    International Captain hendrix's Avatar
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    The point I was making about the England attack is that they have noone anywhere near the Imran/Wasim level, or even Steyn/Philander, but they get the job done. Granted, they have batsmen that get the runs on the board, but they're still capable as an attack to completely run through a side - as Broad has done twice already this year.

    I agree that there isn't really one true pace spearhead, but a) I think you're underrating Junaid - I think in a couple of years he could be at least as good as Jimmy Anderson b) the spearhead of the bowling is in Ajmal anyway.

    re: Swann - I don't think outbowling R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja is particularly impressive.

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    Well there are people like afridi and gayle who hit 120-125 Km from time to time but bowling consistently with pace and your fingers rolling is asking for trouble. Not a bad thought though. cheers.
    Last edited by dynamosports; 20-11-2013 at 12:31 AM.

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by hendrix View Post
    The point I was making about the England attack is that they have noone anywhere near the Imran/Wasim level, or even Steyn/Philander, but they get the job done. Granted, they have batsmen that get the runs on the board, but they're still capable as an attack to completely run through a side - as Broad has done twice already this year.

    I agree that there isn't really one true pace spearhead, but a) I think you're underrating Junaid - I think in a couple of years he could be at least as good as Jimmy Anderson b) the spearhead of the bowling is in Ajmal anyway.

    re: Swann - I don't think outbowling R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja is particularly impressive.

    Steyn will be an all-time great by the time he retires.

    Outbowling Ashwin and Jadeja is no big deal but doing better than Indian spinners on the whole against Indian batsmen in India is something to be taken seriously.

    Remember that uptil now only Saqlain Mushtaq in 1999 and Danish Kaneria in 2005 (when he outbowled Kumble and Harbhajjan Singh) and to an extent Nicky Boje in 2000 have managed it in recent times.

  14. #44
    Cricketer Of The Year Agent Nationaux's Avatar
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    Junaid has the potential to be a very good bowler but I agree, he may not be the spearhead. And your point about Gul is spot on. He was always a support bowler and nothing more.

    Do you know anyone in the domestic scene who is good enough to come into the team?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Nationaux View Post
    Junaid has the potential to be a very good bowler but I agree, he may not be the spearhead. And your point about Gul is spot on. He was always a support bowler and nothing more.

    Do you know anyone in the domestic scene who is good enough to come into the team?
    On Junaid - from what I have seen of him, he can be a decent bowler in the long run but he isn't half the bowler Mohammad Amir was. He was bowling at 150+ in Australia and New Zealand and swinging it when 17. Well before that he bowled that astonishing first over in the T20 Final. In England, he knew how to reduce his pace to extract more movement and use pace as a shock weapon. Junaid is nowhere near him.

    As for Pakistanis, I have not followed domestic cricket seriously for over 20 years but here are my observations:

    Javed Miandad is the staunchest, most jingoistic supporter of the current domestic setup. He is holding a corporate executive's position in the Pakistan Cricket Board and with the onus now completely on the Pakistani system to produce players, he should have the moral courage to stand up and say that he has been wrong all these years.

    Five, six years ago, a bowler called Sohail Khan took a record haul in Pakistani domestic cricket. He broke several records, including most wickets in a match in Pakistan. He had a good action and generated genuine pace. He was 23 then but not considered good enough. Today, it is too late to play him. He did play two tests - a test played on a a bowlers' graveyard and the second in which he bowled steadily but by that time he was 27 already. Now he is 29.

    The same holds for all other bowlers who do well but are never considered good enough. When they are finally blooded, they are way past their prime.

    So if you ask me, I do not have many hopes. May be some years from now, a tearaway will come out of nowhere like Imran Khan did at Sydney and spark a revival. But with this setup and this management team? I am sorry.

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