Australia news December 15, 2011

Australia's spin struggle exposed by CA study

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As offspinner Nathan Lyon strengthens his claim to be Australia's No. 1 slow bowler, a study commissioned by Cricket Australia has revealed how the art of spin withered after the retirement of Shane Warne.

Lyon's emergence is made to look all the more remarkable by the study's findings, which expose a crippling lack of genuine opportunities afforded to graduates of junior cricket, and a poverty of patience and understanding for spin's subtleties.

The study, conducted this year and obtained by ESPNcricinfo, was done by CA and the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) to better understand why spinners struggled to make a lasting impact in Warne's wake.

Following Warne's exit from Test cricket in the first week of 2007, Australia's selectors tried 11 spin bowlers in search of the right practitioner at the national level.

In the Sheffield Shield competition, opportunities for spinners have diminished with time, their roles often limited to defensive commissions. Lyon, the most recent spin bowler to be tried for Australia, made a promising start, benefiting from a longer-term approach to his development in the team and the sympathetic captaincy of Michael Clarke.

The study involved 24 Australian spin bowlers of a variety of ages, including 10 international representatives, another five first-class players, and nine state junior cricketers. Research was undertaken by CA spin coach John Davison, CA/AIS analyst Wayne Spratford and University of NSW professor David Mann.

Its conclusions relate that spin bowlers were given fewer chances to grow and develop their skills relative to batsmen and fast bowlers, when the background of most spin bowlers dictated that they should be given more.

"Spin-bowlers should be given more time to develop than other cricketers," the study's authors wrote. "In general they have played five-six years of cricket before they start to bowl spin. It is commonly acknowledged that a certain volume of practice is required to develop an expert level of performance in any given type of skill (often cited to be 10,000 hours), and as a result spin bowlers will be older than their peers by the time they have acquired a sufficient volume of practice."

Slow bowling is commonly arrived at as a cricketer's skill of choice after other options have been tried. The study points out that spin requires more complex skills and ideas that are more easily reached and understood in adulthood.

"Cricketers generally need to develop a general motor-program ('muscle-memory') for bowling before they can progress to bowling spin," the study said. "This is much like a swimmer should learn to do free-style before they can specialise in other strokes.

"Many of the ligaments and muscles in the shoulder, wrist, and fingers may need time to sufficiently grow and develop before children are ready to bowl spin. Junior cricketers, generally, have a preference to 'make-it' as a pace bowler first, and may only take up spin as a 'default' if they are not good enough, fit enough, or sustain injuries when bowling pace. Several of our key first-class/international spin-bowlers did not start bowling spin until they were 17-18."

Significantly, the study found that spin bowlers commonly experienced a 25% drop in the amount of overs they bowled in matches when they made the transition from junior cricket to first-class competition.

"Opportunities to bowl in games diminish considerably when players transition out of junior cricket," the study said. "Spin bowlers generally decrease their bowling by 25% when they finish junior cricket, typically at a point when they should be increasing their volume of bowling."

As spin bowlers develop in Australia, their opportunities to bowl further and gain a greater level of skill are limited by a combination of unhelpful captains, conditions and 21st century leisure habits. The study suggests that in general, young slow bowlers do not practice on their own often enough, as previous generations had done.

"Many of our spin bowlers do not perform the volume of bowling that we observe performed by other sportspeople that reach high levels of achievement," the study said. "Spin bowlers tend to be practising less by themselves and restricting most of their practice/play to official team training and games. This may be an effect of a changing society where there are less opportunities for backyard/informal play, and more distractions such as computer games and television."

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • mick82 on December 18, 2011, 21:48 GMT

    To Damien in France, Alright fair play but i get frustrated hearing teams talk bout bowling as a unit etc all these approaches used by the aussie teams now being used successfully to dismantle them. I dont see how sharing approaches like that help our cause. Gives away any advantage. I dont see the All blacks giving away too much. I dont even see the Ecb giving much away. But we continue to. How can you be best practice when others can see everything you do and pick and choose what to follow

  • on December 18, 2011, 19:42 GMT

    guess thts the story everywhere. India seems to be embarrassed in the spin department as well. None of the current crop look like test match material and I say this in spite of Ashwin's 5fers against the WI. I'd be glad if he proves this wrong. The likes of Rahul Sharma, Ravidra Jadeja et all all look good for the limited overs game. This is suffocating. Where are the drifts, the topspinners, the Googlys. These are mostly tall spin bowlers relying on bounce and shotmaking from batsmen. Ojha seems to be swayed by too little. I hope the time spent by harbhajan on the sidelines improves his mindset and he concentrates more on bowling well and slower than sledging and theatrics. Hope the stocks improve.

  • PYC1959 on December 18, 2011, 1:50 GMT

    @ brenburra, been there done that and it's hard to find a coach who will give encouragement to the youngsters. Just persist with it by yourself and along the way you will come across someone who loves spin as much as you do. One way I started for my son was to ask the leggy from the A grade district team, as spinners love to pass their knowledge on and then from there you will find others until you find the right one as we have been lucky enough to.Get a book called "The Art of Wrist Spin Bowling" by Peter Philpott it's a bible for spinners. Good Luck mate, I wish you all the best, if he is serious just let him know it is a very frustrating road ahead and many spinners who are not as good as him will get preference over him because they will be getting wickets with rubbish balls. My son is 16 and we still have problems with coaches, but I know in the end all will sort it self out.

  • DamieninFrance on December 17, 2011, 19:49 GMT

    To mick82, one of the reasons that Australia has done so well (and will recover quickly) is precisely because they DO follow a system of transparency. I'm an Aussie, living in France as the Director of Masters programme in Wine Marketing. Aus wine makers also follow the same mantra of transparency, and both learn collaboratively AND invite critque and comment because of this transparency. As such, the Australian side gets free 'advice' from all those who choose to comment on such actions, whilst opponents operating 'secretly' only benefit from the wisdom of those in the inner sanctum. The French wine sector has been heading down the toilet for the past 30 years because they ignore there's a problem, and very little sharing of information happens between regions. I'd hate Australians to follow that model!

  • sonicattack on December 17, 2011, 16:49 GMT

    Whilst undoubtedly Lyon seems better than some of the other spinners Aus have tried recently, just need to point out that, of his 22 test wickets 13 have been batsmen 8 - 11, whilst it's good to be able to get rid of the tail-enders I think that judgement on Lyon should be reserved for a bit....

  • brendanburra on December 17, 2011, 1:53 GMT

    I agree with most of these articles, my son is a leggie at 12 years of age & all the paid for camps he's been on describe him as having real potential...The point is he has taught himself to this point. There really does not appear to be a path for these young guys to follow. He got invited to one training afternoon by the state cricket organisation for spinners & that was it, although making the rep team in his district - where he was given a bowl which at times seemed reluctantly by the coach although his fiqures were on par with the quicks. These young guys (like all young sportspeople) need to be nurtured & encouraged to develop their potential with this difficult craft. He has always bowled spin & just absolutely loves taking wickets & tying up & at times bamboozling batsmen (including me) I will continue to support him, any suggestions to find decent mentoring for young spinners would be much appreciated. Qld Australia.

  • on December 16, 2011, 12:41 GMT

    The situation is not helped by looking at Australia's spin bowling coach: John Davison is best remembered as a batsmen whom didn't quite make it at South Australia whom went on to smash the fastest century in world cup history for Canada. His bowling could at best be described as a "part timer". The state of coaching was so bad that in the recent guest article Ashley Mallet call's on Nathan Lyon to ignore the coaches!!! The level of elite coaching is not there, compounding the issues identified in the report. Steve Smith never bowled better than directly after his workout with Shane Warne. What disappoints me most is that Mallet is happy to take shots from the sideline, yet has not stepped up and offer to directly help Lyon

  • on December 16, 2011, 5:53 GMT

    Actually there are not too many spinners in India too , despite India having great bowlers like Bedi, Prasanna and Venkat in the past. Harbhajan is way past his prime and the new spinners have to establish themselves yet. England has one good bowler in Swann. I think the role of the spin bowler too has to change if the bowler is not of the class or ability of Warne. Then the bowler has to restrict, change ends, change pace and hope the batsman will make some mistakes. The pitches too seem to favour seamers and pacers. Australia has a string of fast bowlers who have potential. Clearly the role models have been Mcgrath and Lee and not so much Warne. Of course there are pretenders like Steve Smith too ! The next crop of spinners will not attack but more often than not defend. Surprisingly the windies have a couple of budding spinners who look interesting. sridhar

  • AidanFX on December 16, 2011, 4:58 GMT

    hhillbumper - Seriously mate - England have been good lately - but not even close to a dynasty - they have been embarrassed time and time again with their One Day squad; and to be sure there is not clear daylight between SA and Eng. Aus is emerging fine. Your jokes wont last long

  • Chris_Kiama on December 16, 2011, 3:29 GMT

    There are lots of reasons why spinners start later or get less attention: 1) Most kids are tearaways and prefer to run in and hurl as fast as possible. Same with batting. 2) There are 3 quicks and one spinner in a team, hence fewer opportunities. 3) Most junior coaches don't know how to bowl spin, so coaching is non-existent to poor (I know - been there and done that!) 4) Kids' hands are small. To bowl spin well you need reasonably long fingers plus wrist strength and flexibility. Most kids can only really bowl cutters. Some can manage leg spin with a high trajectory. It does take focus from a junior coach/manager to encourage all the skills and identify who might have themin enough abundance to encourage some specialisation. Not easy for the Dads and Mums who coach the juniors without any real training. Cricket clubs need to take up the challenge to educate their junior coaches.

  • mick82 on December 18, 2011, 21:48 GMT

    To Damien in France, Alright fair play but i get frustrated hearing teams talk bout bowling as a unit etc all these approaches used by the aussie teams now being used successfully to dismantle them. I dont see how sharing approaches like that help our cause. Gives away any advantage. I dont see the All blacks giving away too much. I dont even see the Ecb giving much away. But we continue to. How can you be best practice when others can see everything you do and pick and choose what to follow

  • on December 18, 2011, 19:42 GMT

    guess thts the story everywhere. India seems to be embarrassed in the spin department as well. None of the current crop look like test match material and I say this in spite of Ashwin's 5fers against the WI. I'd be glad if he proves this wrong. The likes of Rahul Sharma, Ravidra Jadeja et all all look good for the limited overs game. This is suffocating. Where are the drifts, the topspinners, the Googlys. These are mostly tall spin bowlers relying on bounce and shotmaking from batsmen. Ojha seems to be swayed by too little. I hope the time spent by harbhajan on the sidelines improves his mindset and he concentrates more on bowling well and slower than sledging and theatrics. Hope the stocks improve.

  • PYC1959 on December 18, 2011, 1:50 GMT

    @ brenburra, been there done that and it's hard to find a coach who will give encouragement to the youngsters. Just persist with it by yourself and along the way you will come across someone who loves spin as much as you do. One way I started for my son was to ask the leggy from the A grade district team, as spinners love to pass their knowledge on and then from there you will find others until you find the right one as we have been lucky enough to.Get a book called "The Art of Wrist Spin Bowling" by Peter Philpott it's a bible for spinners. Good Luck mate, I wish you all the best, if he is serious just let him know it is a very frustrating road ahead and many spinners who are not as good as him will get preference over him because they will be getting wickets with rubbish balls. My son is 16 and we still have problems with coaches, but I know in the end all will sort it self out.

  • DamieninFrance on December 17, 2011, 19:49 GMT

    To mick82, one of the reasons that Australia has done so well (and will recover quickly) is precisely because they DO follow a system of transparency. I'm an Aussie, living in France as the Director of Masters programme in Wine Marketing. Aus wine makers also follow the same mantra of transparency, and both learn collaboratively AND invite critque and comment because of this transparency. As such, the Australian side gets free 'advice' from all those who choose to comment on such actions, whilst opponents operating 'secretly' only benefit from the wisdom of those in the inner sanctum. The French wine sector has been heading down the toilet for the past 30 years because they ignore there's a problem, and very little sharing of information happens between regions. I'd hate Australians to follow that model!

  • sonicattack on December 17, 2011, 16:49 GMT

    Whilst undoubtedly Lyon seems better than some of the other spinners Aus have tried recently, just need to point out that, of his 22 test wickets 13 have been batsmen 8 - 11, whilst it's good to be able to get rid of the tail-enders I think that judgement on Lyon should be reserved for a bit....

  • brendanburra on December 17, 2011, 1:53 GMT

    I agree with most of these articles, my son is a leggie at 12 years of age & all the paid for camps he's been on describe him as having real potential...The point is he has taught himself to this point. There really does not appear to be a path for these young guys to follow. He got invited to one training afternoon by the state cricket organisation for spinners & that was it, although making the rep team in his district - where he was given a bowl which at times seemed reluctantly by the coach although his fiqures were on par with the quicks. These young guys (like all young sportspeople) need to be nurtured & encouraged to develop their potential with this difficult craft. He has always bowled spin & just absolutely loves taking wickets & tying up & at times bamboozling batsmen (including me) I will continue to support him, any suggestions to find decent mentoring for young spinners would be much appreciated. Qld Australia.

  • on December 16, 2011, 12:41 GMT

    The situation is not helped by looking at Australia's spin bowling coach: John Davison is best remembered as a batsmen whom didn't quite make it at South Australia whom went on to smash the fastest century in world cup history for Canada. His bowling could at best be described as a "part timer". The state of coaching was so bad that in the recent guest article Ashley Mallet call's on Nathan Lyon to ignore the coaches!!! The level of elite coaching is not there, compounding the issues identified in the report. Steve Smith never bowled better than directly after his workout with Shane Warne. What disappoints me most is that Mallet is happy to take shots from the sideline, yet has not stepped up and offer to directly help Lyon

  • on December 16, 2011, 5:53 GMT

    Actually there are not too many spinners in India too , despite India having great bowlers like Bedi, Prasanna and Venkat in the past. Harbhajan is way past his prime and the new spinners have to establish themselves yet. England has one good bowler in Swann. I think the role of the spin bowler too has to change if the bowler is not of the class or ability of Warne. Then the bowler has to restrict, change ends, change pace and hope the batsman will make some mistakes. The pitches too seem to favour seamers and pacers. Australia has a string of fast bowlers who have potential. Clearly the role models have been Mcgrath and Lee and not so much Warne. Of course there are pretenders like Steve Smith too ! The next crop of spinners will not attack but more often than not defend. Surprisingly the windies have a couple of budding spinners who look interesting. sridhar

  • AidanFX on December 16, 2011, 4:58 GMT

    hhillbumper - Seriously mate - England have been good lately - but not even close to a dynasty - they have been embarrassed time and time again with their One Day squad; and to be sure there is not clear daylight between SA and Eng. Aus is emerging fine. Your jokes wont last long

  • Chris_Kiama on December 16, 2011, 3:29 GMT

    There are lots of reasons why spinners start later or get less attention: 1) Most kids are tearaways and prefer to run in and hurl as fast as possible. Same with batting. 2) There are 3 quicks and one spinner in a team, hence fewer opportunities. 3) Most junior coaches don't know how to bowl spin, so coaching is non-existent to poor (I know - been there and done that!) 4) Kids' hands are small. To bowl spin well you need reasonably long fingers plus wrist strength and flexibility. Most kids can only really bowl cutters. Some can manage leg spin with a high trajectory. It does take focus from a junior coach/manager to encourage all the skills and identify who might have themin enough abundance to encourage some specialisation. Not easy for the Dads and Mums who coach the juniors without any real training. Cricket clubs need to take up the challenge to educate their junior coaches.

  • gurumaster on December 16, 2011, 0:05 GMT

    Compare the skills time spent by cricketers in development years vs other sports and it comes up short. Compare the number of balls a golf pro hits in a week to the number of balls faced in the nets by a batsman in a year or balls bowled by spinners. Kids don't spend the time learning outside of game time and parents are becoming more and more reluctant to devote to sitting on the sidelines. We have to get smarter with the time we get with our dwindling youth stocks. Muscle memory does not exist, our noodles control the dumb meaty bits.

  • PYC1959 on December 15, 2011, 21:58 GMT

    No surprises here, but a good article. It all starts at the junior level with club and district coaches hell bent on pace and not even the slightest bit interested in developing spin. I have even seen coaches take spin bowlers off to bring the quicks back on to get quick wickets despite the spin bowlers taking the majority of the wickets up to that point. Coaches allow spinners to get hit all over the place in the nets, they are treated as second class citizens in most cases. The powers to be at a State level need to speak to all junior coaches and to get them to encourage them to bowl spin, perhaps award extra points for every over of spin bowled, as it appears a lot of Junior coaches are only focused on the win.

  • hhillbumper on December 15, 2011, 20:59 GMT

    O'Keefe greatest spinner in the world behind Lyon.You Aussies are good.Best joke I have read on this site all day. Whats the similarity between an Aussie Spinner and an Indian Pacer ? They both get spanked by the English

  • Lord_Dravid on December 15, 2011, 16:39 GMT

    All aussie fans and india bashers be prepared to be swung and spun out by india! :D Chak de India!! wooop!

  • tfjones1978 on December 15, 2011, 14:38 GMT

    I agree with this article. Bowling spin during 80s was seen as a batsmens job, this changed during 90s and 00s, but the incorrect concept has returned again. One of the issues was that Warne was too effective. Spinners growing up in 90s and 00s were unable to compete against the experienced generation of spinners like Warne, Hogg and others. Australia lost our three experienced very good/great spinners in the space of six months. However the biggest problem as stated is that Captains are after the win and not after developing players. Shield cricket should have a minimum requirement of spin bowling. This will encourage teams to play a specialist spinner instead of a batsmen that spins a little. A way of doing this is that each innings 20% of overs bowled must be bowled by spin with attacking fields. Similar could occur in domestic one-dayers, where a minimum of 10 overs in a completed innings would need to be bowled by spin with field restrictions.

  • RandyOZ on December 15, 2011, 13:01 GMT

    No need to worry about the spin department anymore. Lyon has already overtaken Swann and is equal with Ajmal as the best spinners on Earth.

  • Wefinishthis on December 15, 2011, 12:32 GMT

    Give me a break, it's no different now than it used to be. We produced O'Reilly, Grimmet, Benaud, Warne, MacGill and now O'Keefe and Lyon. Not many other teams have produced world-beating spinners other than Murali really (Swann is doing well) but we have two with great potential. O'Keefe is the best spinner in the country (and probably world) followed by Lyon and Hauritz. We have spinning riches at the moment, it's just that our selectors don't stick to a performance-policy and instead try to 'back the player' which never works in cricket.

  • banter123 on December 15, 2011, 12:27 GMT

    These studies and reports are like shooting in the dark. An avid cricket lover will point out in 5 minutes about the problems with a cricket team. As lawyers make the law more complex to make them look like they deserve hefty pay packages,its same with the coaches and support staff. When develop teams like Australia fail its lack of quality and competitiveness in the system,also selectors lacking vision.

  • on December 15, 2011, 12:13 GMT

    Benn Glazier - Remember the team he had? They were all ageing, already knew their stuff, and it wouldn't matter who coached them.

  • boredkumar on December 15, 2011, 11:47 GMT

    i think its more of a cultural thing. Todays papaers in india reported a 6 year old spin bowler representing mumbai under 14 took 6 wickets on debut. so there has to be a case for preference also. Spin need not be bowled only after elimination of all other forms. you grow up watching great spinners foxing batsmen and you think, that what i want to do, thats how i want to get batsmen out. Not that because i am no good as a fast bowler i will bowl spin. sorry dnt agree with that. in fact i will go to the extent of saying fast bowling is the easier way out!! much more skill involved in flight, variation etc

  • AidanFX on December 15, 2011, 11:12 GMT

    Ok so - I am not surprised to hear players try pace or batting first... then take spin as last resort... Is there a way of cultivating spin at grassroots level? That's something I'd like to heard about. Apparently spin King Warne hasn't had that miraculous effect om youngsters.

  • on December 15, 2011, 10:40 GMT

    Should question role of Academies that rolled out steriotypical cricketer and failed to optimise skills and talents of the not so steriotypical ones.

  • ygkd on December 15, 2011, 10:22 GMT

    There's no point in worrying about spinners if we leave wicketkeeping out of the equation. To think of Warne should be to think of Healy (or Gilchrist) too. Similarly, Grimmett and OReilly were partnered with Oldfield. That's why I'm pleased to see Ludeman in the Chairman's XI game. The young adopted Sth Aussie still needs to work on his batting, but his glovework is developing fine to a point where it is far closer, in my view, to Healy's than that of Wade who seems next in line (Paine's availability notwithstanding) for a baggy green. However, I fear that although Healy has only been irritating me from the commentary box for about a decade, his outstanding low, rising keeping style is already all but history. And how about automatically extending the 10000 hours principle to young wickies too? And I mean 10000 hours, not dives. Healy only dived if he had to. And he was probably better up than back. Young spinners deserve better support behind the stumps if they're to stick it out.

  • StoneRose on December 15, 2011, 9:56 GMT

    This study shows the importance of Test cricket and non-one-day cricket generally: although spinners are probably the most useful weapon in limited overs cricket and Twenty20 in particular, without bowling long spells they would not be able to develop the skills required.

  • on December 15, 2011, 9:00 GMT

    Hayden Jones - Remember John Buchanan. Have a look at his first class record and then get back to me about John Davison.

  • Dashgar on December 15, 2011, 7:28 GMT

    These sort of studies will really help Australia, for too long we have taken our success in the 90s and 00s for granted. We really need to get back to basics, not just with spin bowling but with batting, keeping, fast bowling and fielding as well.

  • RiscoGrande on December 15, 2011, 7:23 GMT

    Also, I believe issues with captains is the number one problem, there needs to be more education with captains on the complexities of spin bowling, because although dan vettori is an exception, you don't tend to see spin bowlers as captains, it is usually batsman who see spin bowlers as an easy target when they are batting and presume being hit for six means they are bowling poorley when in fact, its probably the batsman getting lucky

  • RiscoGrande on December 15, 2011, 7:05 GMT

    same situation in NZ, probably worse

  • satish619chandar on December 15, 2011, 6:01 GMT

    Aussies perhaps ruined some careers looking for dramatic starts.. Hauritz, Krejza and Casson performed decently but never knew what the reason for their rejection.. Godo to see atleast they are persisting with Lyon and Clarke had used him reasonably well too..

  • mick82 on December 15, 2011, 6:00 GMT

    Are other cricket bodies as open as Australias?? what i mean is, we have no use of discretion. Our teams tactics are discussed by the captain to the media,, our bowling coaches mantra is common knowledge. Our player performance studies are published on the net for all other boards to read. Is there no paranoia that other teams are watching and copying what works and leaving what doesnt? Familiarising themselves with our coaching strategies for juniors and seniors alike. Eng openly admit to copying Australias blueprint for success. John Buchannan probably consulted them on it. Why do we continue to be so transparent when other teams confess to modeling themselves on our set up. Somethings should be for the opposition to guess at, not recieve exact details on.

  • on December 15, 2011, 6:00 GMT

    Observations made by CA study are very insightful and articulate. They had pinpointed errors exactly made by CA after Warne's retirement. This might revive the art of spin bowling in Australia.

  • on December 15, 2011, 5:30 GMT

    Let me start my comment with the news that Danish Kaneria, most notable leggy of recent time has completed his 1000 wickets in first class cricket, and yes, he is not in Pakistani National team, because Saeed Ajmal is performing like Rolls Rice car and second choice orthodox Abdur Rehman also proves his claim for a permanent place, whenever given chance. They both are skillful, gritty and hardworking, continuously working to enhance their ability, performing well on even less supporting wickets. Then there is an all purpose player called Abdul Hafeez, who despite being an opener, bowls like a magician. I believe these bowlers perform to utmost level because they have such a close contest among them for their place in the team. If Ajmal performs poorly in two matches in line, he will be replaced by Rehman in next match. I believe Australian cricket can not overcome this problem until they are able to create a competitive atmosphere between spinners.

  • Prasant_NSW on December 15, 2011, 4:51 GMT

    Yes. it is true that there is no good spinner Aussie got after Shane Warne. Spin is an art of sub continent.

    - Prasant UNSW

  • on December 15, 2011, 4:48 GMT

    I'm completely baffled as to why John Davison is the spin coach at CA. A batting all-rounder that could barely make it into the Victorian second XI, and one with a first-class bowling average of 45 (mainly against minnows) is not somebody we want training our spinners. This is why they are not world-class. Lyon is the exception, as he hardly spent any time at the academy.

  • smudgeon on December 15, 2011, 4:40 GMT

    I remember this being talked about a good 10 years ago, particularly about domestic captains not understanding enough about spinners to give them the opportunities and respect their craft needs to develop. Glad it's now "officially" on CA's radar, maybe they can try to bring about helpful changes. Of course, being a spinner on the Australian pitches of the last 20 years is a fairly thankless task, it's a wonder Warne & Macgill developed at all.

  • dsig3 on December 15, 2011, 4:39 GMT

    Go to any net session in Aus and you will see spinners getting hit all over the place. Its very hard to hone any skill when as soon as you start you are under constant attack.

  • on December 15, 2011, 4:20 GMT

    "a study commissioned by Cricket Australia has revealed how the art of spin withered on the vine after the retirement of Shane Warne." Wow - what a worthwhile study. I could have told them this for free and they could have saved a few bucks.

  • Marcio on December 15, 2011, 4:05 GMT

    Well let's just hope that Nathan Lyon continues to develop, and I can't see any reason why not. He is making a huge difference, especially in cleaning up tail enders. He really gives AUS the potential to build a very well balanced team in the next couple of years. On a related note, I lost count of how many times I saw one-dimensional bowlers like Siddlle running up and trying to grunt tail enders out. He was still getting smashed around by the tail in the last test, and it cost AUS the game. How is it that a man opening the bowling for Australia cannot swing a cricket ball? I learned to swing the ball, both ways, at the age of 14 by reading a cricket book, then going down to the nets and teaching myself. Side on, roll the wrist off cutter style for an outswinger, front on, leg cutter action for inswingers. How difficult is that? It took me about a month to get it! Why can't Siddle?

  • on December 15, 2011, 4:02 GMT

    Lyon although successful in the early stages of his career, but is not likely to become australia's version of Muralitharan. Murali is the undisputed legend of off spin bowling as Shane Warne is of leg spin bowling. India will present a good challenge for Lyon, don't be surprised if he toils hard for his wickets.

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  • on December 15, 2011, 4:02 GMT

    Lyon although successful in the early stages of his career, but is not likely to become australia's version of Muralitharan. Murali is the undisputed legend of off spin bowling as Shane Warne is of leg spin bowling. India will present a good challenge for Lyon, don't be surprised if he toils hard for his wickets.

  • Marcio on December 15, 2011, 4:05 GMT

    Well let's just hope that Nathan Lyon continues to develop, and I can't see any reason why not. He is making a huge difference, especially in cleaning up tail enders. He really gives AUS the potential to build a very well balanced team in the next couple of years. On a related note, I lost count of how many times I saw one-dimensional bowlers like Siddlle running up and trying to grunt tail enders out. He was still getting smashed around by the tail in the last test, and it cost AUS the game. How is it that a man opening the bowling for Australia cannot swing a cricket ball? I learned to swing the ball, both ways, at the age of 14 by reading a cricket book, then going down to the nets and teaching myself. Side on, roll the wrist off cutter style for an outswinger, front on, leg cutter action for inswingers. How difficult is that? It took me about a month to get it! Why can't Siddle?

  • on December 15, 2011, 4:20 GMT

    "a study commissioned by Cricket Australia has revealed how the art of spin withered on the vine after the retirement of Shane Warne." Wow - what a worthwhile study. I could have told them this for free and they could have saved a few bucks.

  • dsig3 on December 15, 2011, 4:39 GMT

    Go to any net session in Aus and you will see spinners getting hit all over the place. Its very hard to hone any skill when as soon as you start you are under constant attack.

  • smudgeon on December 15, 2011, 4:40 GMT

    I remember this being talked about a good 10 years ago, particularly about domestic captains not understanding enough about spinners to give them the opportunities and respect their craft needs to develop. Glad it's now "officially" on CA's radar, maybe they can try to bring about helpful changes. Of course, being a spinner on the Australian pitches of the last 20 years is a fairly thankless task, it's a wonder Warne & Macgill developed at all.

  • on December 15, 2011, 4:48 GMT

    I'm completely baffled as to why John Davison is the spin coach at CA. A batting all-rounder that could barely make it into the Victorian second XI, and one with a first-class bowling average of 45 (mainly against minnows) is not somebody we want training our spinners. This is why they are not world-class. Lyon is the exception, as he hardly spent any time at the academy.

  • Prasant_NSW on December 15, 2011, 4:51 GMT

    Yes. it is true that there is no good spinner Aussie got after Shane Warne. Spin is an art of sub continent.

    - Prasant UNSW

  • on December 15, 2011, 5:30 GMT

    Let me start my comment with the news that Danish Kaneria, most notable leggy of recent time has completed his 1000 wickets in first class cricket, and yes, he is not in Pakistani National team, because Saeed Ajmal is performing like Rolls Rice car and second choice orthodox Abdur Rehman also proves his claim for a permanent place, whenever given chance. They both are skillful, gritty and hardworking, continuously working to enhance their ability, performing well on even less supporting wickets. Then there is an all purpose player called Abdul Hafeez, who despite being an opener, bowls like a magician. I believe these bowlers perform to utmost level because they have such a close contest among them for their place in the team. If Ajmal performs poorly in two matches in line, he will be replaced by Rehman in next match. I believe Australian cricket can not overcome this problem until they are able to create a competitive atmosphere between spinners.

  • on December 15, 2011, 6:00 GMT

    Observations made by CA study are very insightful and articulate. They had pinpointed errors exactly made by CA after Warne's retirement. This might revive the art of spin bowling in Australia.

  • mick82 on December 15, 2011, 6:00 GMT

    Are other cricket bodies as open as Australias?? what i mean is, we have no use of discretion. Our teams tactics are discussed by the captain to the media,, our bowling coaches mantra is common knowledge. Our player performance studies are published on the net for all other boards to read. Is there no paranoia that other teams are watching and copying what works and leaving what doesnt? Familiarising themselves with our coaching strategies for juniors and seniors alike. Eng openly admit to copying Australias blueprint for success. John Buchannan probably consulted them on it. Why do we continue to be so transparent when other teams confess to modeling themselves on our set up. Somethings should be for the opposition to guess at, not recieve exact details on.