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Lets end it: Sydney Barnes

Where does Sydney Barnes rank?


  • Total voters
    55

Craig

World Traveller
A look at his record is superb, but then conditions where sooooooooooooo much different to what they are now. Some on here have claimed him to be best or one of the best bowlers ever. So let's settle it for once and for all, is he the best bowler ever or indeed top 5 or 10? Or a very lucky bowler who took advantage of helpful pitch conditions (he did play on matting at some point) but not that good? Or we can't be sure because he finished his FC career in 1930 and then cricket changed even more.

Vote away.
 

Richard

Cricket Web Staff Member
No doubt in my mind. I said it elsewhere, but I find it a real shame that Barnes did not come accross early in his career an understanding captain who realised he was special and was willing to bend over backwards to ensure he achieved what he was capable of.

Had he done that, and debuted in First-Class cricket at the normal sort of age (21-22) then played Test cricket and for a major county for the next 20 years, playing 40 or 50 Tests, I'm totally confident he'd have as unequivocal a case for being the greatest bowler as Bradman has with the bat.

It's not like Barnes was a 19th-century bowler. Since the turn of the 20th-century, no bowler has even really come close to achieving figures like his, and nor is it surprising given how we know from testimonies that he bowled.
 

Top_Cat

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No doubt in my mind. I said it elsewhere, but I find it a real shame that Barnes did not come accross early in his career an understanding captain who realised he was special and was willing to bend over backwards to ensure he achieved what he was capable of.
Yeah that whole "no 'i' in 'team'" stuff gets in the way, don't it?
 

Son Of Coco

Hall of Fame Member
Specialists willing to euthanase sick babies: survey. Posted February 7, 2007 09:10:00 Updated February 7, 2007 10:24:00. A survey of neonatal specialists ...ABC NEWS
Proof right there! Although it isn't in the dictionary and is actually euthanise...I'm going with the reputable reporting source!
 

Manee

Cricketer Of The Year
Indeed he was ahead of his time. To the extent that I believe he merely bowled quick cutters on pitches which were infinately helpful to him and batsmen who had never experienced such bowling.
 

archie mac

International Coach
Indeed he was ahead of his time. To the extent that I believe he merely bowled quick cutters on pitches which were infinately helpful to him and batsmen who had never experienced such bowling.
He was still dismissing good batsman in his 60s
 

Ikki

Hall of Fame Member
It's hard to tell exactly what he was. I do think he was a bit overrated, however. His career coincided with some of the lowest batting averages in history. That's what I know, if there is reasoning behind this I'd love the background knowledge.
 

Manee

Cricketer Of The Year
He was still dismissing good batsman in his 60s
'Good' on what basis. Good in being able to negotiate the bowlers of the times who skills were presumably limited due to any lack of standardised coaching. Barnes was very different to any bowler of his time and so a batsman being 'good' can become slightly moot.

(PS: Wow, dismissing batsman in his 60s, pretty impressive)
 

Ikki

Hall of Fame Member
One of the reasons for said low averages was himself.
We're talking about a 7-10 runs on average per batsman. Barnes did not have the kind of effect to be the difference. The above point doesn't disprove what I had said.
 

bagapath

International Captain
with covered wickets, scientific analysis of bowlers and their tricks, protective gear, stronger bats, lighter bads, reduced boundaries and batsman friendly laws, neither barnes - nor any other bowler for that matter - would be able to average under 17 runs for more than 100 wickets in test matches these days. better fielding standards and planned field placings would be in his favor though. overall i expect him to be a top 10 bowler, as successful as marshall, murali, hadlee and mcgrath. but cant imagine anyone can be miles ahead in talent and achievement compared to these champions. he could very well be at par with them and ambrose, lillee, imran, oreilly, warne and truman. they constitute my top 10 bowlers by the way.
 

archie mac

International Coach
with covered wickets, scientific analysis of bowlers and their tricks, protective gear, stronger bats, lighter bads, reduced boundaries and batsman friendly laws, neither barnes - nor any other bowler for that matter - would be able to average under 17 runs for more than 100 wickets in test matches these days. better fielding standards and planned field placings would be in his favor though. overall i expect him to be a top 10 bowler, as successful as marshall, murali, hadlee and mcgrath. but cant imagine anyone can be miles ahead in talent and achievement compared to these champions.
Also a smaller ball, a much friendlier LBW law, taller stumps, a new ball every 80 overs instead of one per innings (although they did change this to a new ball every 200 runs during his career), timeless Test (in Aust)

Again you come back to his contemporaries, and how much better was he?
 

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