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    August 10, 2005

    Two spinners at Old Trafford?

    Stuart MacGill seems prepared to turn up in the playing XI at Old Trafford. Apparently the pitch may not aid spinners to the extent that it has in the past. Now whether that is due to quirks of nature or instructions from England's cricketing establishment is open to discussion. I must also clarify that it is the prerogative of the host country to determine the pitches and the schedules. Frankly, I think most touring sides doth protest too much.

    I checked some of the recent county championship results at Old Trafford this season, obviously implying Lancashire's home games. I didn't think including limited overs games would give me any sort of impression. The main problem is that there have been only two first-class fixtures played at Old Trafford since June.

    The last county championship game played there a couple of weeks ago featured Lancashire and Essex. Essex made 536 and Lancashire simply stepped up and scored 119 more. Gary Keedy, who is apparently among England's top spinners not named Ashley Giles or Gareth Batty, got one wicket from his fifteen overs, conceding nearly six an over. Danish Kaneria, who played a big role in Pakistan's drawn series in India earlier this year, bowled his 70 overs for 208 runs without bothering to trouble that column called 'wickets'.

    In early June, Lancashire played Northamptonshire. Murali took 7/125 in the game, but only two of those wickets were top order batsmen. Gary Keedy was fortunate enough to pick up one wicket, Northants' number 11.

    Ganesh pointed out that Grant Flower took 3/112 when Lancs made 655. Perhaps that could be an indication that Michael Clarke needs to be used more than he has been so far in the tests, i.e. zero times. After all, Clarke did have the amazing analysis of 6/9 before he and the rest of the Aussie batsmen turned lemmings at Bombay last year.

    I know this is not enough of a sample set, but hey, this is all I can go by! It does not exactly seem a great venue for spinners. Australia could probably be better off with using the same bowling attack, if Lee is fit.

    While in the context of leg-spinners, read what Samanth has to say about that other Australian leggie whose strike-rate is higher than the great Stuart Charles Glyndwr MacGill.

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    Thus spake Jagadish @ 11:22 AM |
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