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English Ashes bolters: The bowlers

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Roar Rookie
3rd April, 2019
27

Australia aren’t the only side with an eye on the Ashes and like the Aussies, England have plenty of young bowling talent.

Let’s take a look at a few of the names you may become familiar with throughout the English summer.

Jamie Porter-Essex

Age-25
Right Arm Fast-Medium
First Class Record-70 Matches, 279 Wickets at 23.96, Best Bowling 7/41

What does he do?
Followers of County cricket will have seen Porter’s name at the top of the wicket taking charts over the past few seasons. A right arm seamer who operates in the low 130s, Porter has proven himself tremendously effective in helpful conditions.

A relative lack of success for the English Lions side has placed some question marks over his effectiveness away from home, but he bowls a straight line and if there is movement, he will exploit it.

Who is he like?
He is a classic English seamer, think Matthew Hoggard, Tim Bresnan and a bit of Vernon Philander.

Will he get a game?
Porter has been close to Test selection and was in the squad throughout the 2018 home summer, unfortunately for him it is difficult to see him playing while James Anderson is fit. If the English side do find themselves without their star man then Porter will be in the mix with the likes of Chris Woakes and Sam Curran for the swing bowling spot.

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Jamie Overton

Age-24
Right Arm Fast
First Class Record-54 Matches, 130 Wickets at 33.22, Best Bowling 6/95

What does he do?
Unlike his nagging twin brother Craig, who Australian fans may remember from the 2017-18 series, this Overton bowls fast.

Unfortunately, a succession of injuries have limited Jamie’s appearances in recent years and he has talked about dropping his pace in search of a consistent run. That would be a shame, as the English test side has been shouting out for a genuine quick, and the presence of all-rounder Ben Stokes means that there is room for a shock bowler.

Overton is wayward and raw, however anyone who operates in the mid 140’s, from a height of 6 ft 5 has the potential to be destructive.

Who is he like?
He’s not a million miles away from a young Steve Harmison, Devon Malcolm, or Shane Harwood

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Will he get a game?
Barring a fast start to the County season it is unlikely that we will see either Overton at the beginning of the Ashes, however if there is a series to chase don’t be surprised to see his name mentioned – if he is fit.

Jofra Archer
Age-24
Right Arm Fast
First Class Record-28 matches, 131 wickets at 23.44, best bowling of 7/67, 1406 runs at 31.34, highest score of 81*

What does he do?
Australian cricket fans will know Archer from the Big Bash and may more recently have heard his name mentioned as a potential selection in the upcoming English One Day side.

At County level, Archer is a fine swing bowler, who uses his extra pace and skidding bouncer to put batsmen on the backfoot.

He is also capable with the willow, although in an England side stacked with all-round talent, this is unlikely to play a significant role in any future selection.

Who is he like?
With his light frame and surprising pace, Archer can be compared to likes of Darren Gough and Kemar Roach.

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Will he get a game?
It is uncertain how much red ball cricket the in demand Archer is going to play this English summer; however, a successful World Cup campaign would put him in the frame for selection.

Other names to look out for

Ben Coad-Yorkshire
The waspish fast-medium has dominated throughout the past two seasons, and with key bowlers leaving he will become a man for Yorkshire. A lack of speed appears likely to hold him back at this point.

Mason Crane-Hampshire
Remember him? The young leg spinner played the Sydney test in 2018 before succumbing to injury. He is surely no chance to play in the upcoming series, but is on the comeback path.