Aussie spin stocks set for Indian workout

By Joe Barton,


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    Australia’s spin stocks will undergo a thorough examination on the subcontinent before an Ashes showdown with England duo Graeme Swann and Monty Panesar.

    Nathan Lyon again failed to deliver a bagful of wickets, taking just two scalps in the final Test against Sri Lanka on a turning SCG pitch.

    It raises alarm bells with Australia’s full Test schedule this season likely to feature spin-friendly wickets – starting in India in February before moving on to England.

    England recently completed their first Test series win in India since 1984, an achievement built around the dual spinning brilliance of Swann, who finished 2012 as Test cricket’s second-most successful wicket-taker, and Panesar.

    And with Australia’s spin stocks at an all-time low – and a pace attack brimming with outstanding, if brittle, young talent – the belief is England will move away from the grassy wickets of old this year.

    Australia’s powerbrokers on Sunday acknowledged the spin deficiency, with captain Michael Clarke saying it was at the forefront of areas that needed to be addressed.

    “There’s certainly areas where we need to continue to get better at,” he said.

    “Spin bowling’s probably one of those areas.

    “In a couple of months time we’re going to be faced with conditions that do spin a lot. There’s no better place to get better than in the subcontinent.”

    National chairman of selectors John Inverarity said Australia lacked depth in the spin department and would look to improve that by taking two back-ups, one to be Glenn Maxwell, to India to support Lyon.

    “We’re pretty clear on our options,” Inverarity said.

    “We certainly wish to have a greater depth of quality spin bowlers than we have but we’ve got a pretty clear direction of where we’re going, in terms of India and beyond.

    “I won’t say now (who those options are). We’ve got pretty good options. There are two or three players that we’re considering to backup Nathan Lyon.”

    Maxwell was desperately unlucky not to be make his Test debut against Sri Lanka in Sydney, but Inverarity made it clear his star was on the rise – and a trip to India beckoned.

    “We’re certainly hoping Glenn Maxwell develops as a batting all-rounder who bowls decent offspin,” Inverarity said.

    “He’s a very talented player who we think is likely to improve on a fairly steep incline.”

    When asked if Australia had missed a trick by overlooking Maxwell for the SCG Test, giving him valuable experience ahead of the India tour, Clarke stayed true to his decision to pick four fast bowlers.

    “To me playing Test match cricket is not about presenting opportunities. It’s about winning,” Clarke said.

    “Our goal, after losing to South Africa, was to win this series 3-0.

    “And we thought that was the right eleven to win this Test match.”

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (9)

    • January 7th 2013 @ 11:02am
      Jason said | January 7th 2013 @ 11:02am | ! Report

      Picking a keeper who knows how to keep against spin might be a start.

      • January 7th 2013 @ 11:09am
        Felix said | January 7th 2013 @ 11:09am | ! Report

        Hear hear! I’ve got no real issues with Wade as a batsman, though I think he can be found wanting a bit. Behind the stumps, he’s probably number 4 in this country behind Hartley, Haddin and Paine.

        I don’t think Maxwell can be considered ‘desperately unlucky’ not to get a game – I think he can be considered fortunate to be in the squad. Our lack of spin bowling stocks is embarrassing, Lyon is not a test quality spinner and has been found wanting many times. If I were 15 years younger, I’d be in the nets bowling leg breaks all day, this NSP would give you a Guernsey from B grade.

        Zampa looks to be a good prospect, it would be nice if Warne stopped tossing tantrums and cricket balls and started tossing some advice his way.

        • January 7th 2013 @ 12:40pm
          jameswm said | January 7th 2013 @ 12:40pm | ! Report

          And Nevill. That puts him at 5.

          Agreed, Zampa has a leggie, wrong un and flipper. Bowls them pretty well too.

          I think his arm’s a little low, but surely he could be a big roject for Warnie. maybe like criminals doing community service instead of a fine/jail time, Warnie can coach this kid as a community service for his recent tanties.

    • Roar Rookie

      January 7th 2013 @ 1:07pm
      Justin Ware said | January 7th 2013 @ 1:07pm | ! Report

      Wade will sort it out, his keeping to fast bowlers is adequate but to spin not so much. He’s 25, remember Marsh and Gilly when they first started? He will only get better, if he sorts out his keeping to spin he’s the best wicketkeeper batsmen in the world

      • January 7th 2013 @ 4:23pm
        saad said | January 7th 2013 @ 4:23pm | ! Report

        No batsman in australia to play spin bowling. So I think India will make turning pitches and both australian bowling and batting will be failed.

    • January 7th 2013 @ 3:31pm
      Whiteline said | January 7th 2013 @ 3:31pm | ! Report

      Justin, that’s a big if. It’s a bit like saying if Ed Cowan develops some additional shots other than the square cut he’ll be a test opener.

      Matt Prior is far and away the best keeper batsman… he’s been doing it for years.

      However, Wade is the chosen one and there would have to be some serious issues for him to be replaced.

      In regards to the spinners. I don’t see a great deal of difference between the job Hauritz did and what Lyon does. Hauritz was dropped, never to return it seems.

      • January 7th 2013 @ 3:40pm
        Jason said | January 7th 2013 @ 3:40pm | ! Report

        I agree re Hauritz. There was clearly more to that than has been made public. Hauritz had that great summer taking 30+ wickets including 4th innings hauls and a year later he was gonski – only to be scoring hundreds in Sheffield Shield.

      • January 8th 2013 @ 10:34am
        Frankie Hughes said | January 8th 2013 @ 10:34am | ! Report

        Matt Prior’s wicket keeping ability is some what overrated.

        He drops as many as Wade, if not more.

        He’s not a high quality keeper.

    • January 8th 2013 @ 11:11am
      Paul said | January 8th 2013 @ 11:11am | ! Report

      I agree with the young Justin’s view about Wade, if he can iron out the technical defeciany to spin bowling he’s just as good as prior if not better.

      Prior: 62 tests, 92 Innings, 3326 runs, AVE: 43.19, 100′s: 6, 50′s: 24
      Wade: 9 tests, 16 Innings, 510 runs, AVE: 42.56, 100′s: 2, 50′s: 2

      Perhaps it won’t be such a surprise if Wade outbats Prior in the Ashes?

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