Bowlers boost England

August 12, 2010 at 10:11 am Leave a comment


In what was another ultimately comfortable win for England against Pakistan the performances of two bowlers stood out.

First of all we have Graeme Swann, whose handy knack of snaring wickets in the first over of a spell is becoming a deadly weapon for Andrew Strauss’ men.

The spinner had cut a frustrated figure in the slips as he was consistently overlooked by, but he eventually took his opportunity with both hands.

His second innings wickets eventually helped to break the tourists’ resistance after they finally found some spirit on the third day.

But his six wicket haul – his first in international cricket – pales into insignificance when compared to that ball to Imran Farhat.

Seventeen years ago Shane Warne introduced himself to the English cricketing public with a pearler of a delivery that pitched outside Mike Gatting’s leg stump and ripped back to take out his off. Gatting’s stunned expression was befitting of a delivery that was later dubbed the ‘ball of the century’.

Now to compare Swann to Warne is stretching things I admit, but his almost identical delivery, albeit it to a left hander this time, suggests that Swann will be a real threat to the Aussies down under. The Ashes betting still makes the home side favourites, but England will fancy their chances.

But although Ponting and co will have been taking note of Swann’s displays they will have taken equal interest in the petulance of Stuart Broad.

Indeed the Aussie press have already taken great delight in the bowler’s foolish act of throwing the ball at Zulqarnain Haider during a frustrating third day, seeking to exploit an apparent weakness to the full.

And a weakness it is. The ruthless Aussies will waste no time in goading young Broad when the Ashes kick off this winter. They are the masters of sledging after all. It’s something that could help swing the cricket odds in their favour.

Let’s hope Broad will learn his lesson and channel his aggression and frustration in the right way next time – just ask Greame Swann how to do it.

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Entry filed under: England.

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