Bangladesh v Australia, 1st ODI, Mirpur April 8, 2011

Clarke eyes White bowling challenge

28

To call Cameron White a reluctant bowler would be to greatly understate his position. For the past 57 matches of his international career White has been allowed to exist solely as a batsman, having not delivered a ball for Australia since the three he sent down against Scotland in August 2009. But all that changed on Thursday when he delivered four tidy overs against a Bangladesh Cricket Board XI at Fatullah. New captain Michael Clarke has stated his intention to revive White's flat legspin irrespective of the latter's noticeable lack of commitment to the art.

Xavier Doherty (nine overs, 1 for 45) and Steve Smith (seven overs, none for 49) fared poorly against their modest opposition, leaving Clarke to toy with White, and the brief audition prompted the captain to call White an allrounder. White, though, has always preferred the sobriquet of batsman.

"I would love to [get him bowling again], I think he's got plenty of talent, not only with the bat but with the ball as well [though] he hasn't bowled much of late for Australia," Clarke said. "He bowled [four overs] yesterday and bowled really well, so I think his bowling can play a big part going forward in Australia in the shorter form of the game, and I thought yesterday was a good opportunity to get a few overs under his belt."

Addressing White's reluctance to bowl, never more evident than when leading the Bushrangers, Clarke made a sound case for belief.

"I think giving him an opportunity is probably a good start [to building his confidence]," he said. "He's certainly got the talent, now it's about getting some overs under his belt so he gradually builds that confidence back in his bowling.

"Whitey is an allrounder, he is a batsman who can certainly bowl for us; it's just about now giving him the opportunity."

That opportunity coincides with an extended run of poor batting form, for it is now 17 matches since White passed 50, or since he managed to clobber the ball with his customary power. Pressed for his spot by David Hussey during the World Cup, he may now be duelling with Smith and Doherty on this tour. Clarke said he expected more from his two specialist slow bowlers.

"They're both two very good bowlers but haven't played too much in these conditions either, so yesterday was about adjusting to the conditions, he said. "The wicket was quite slow yesterday and had inconsistent turn. Playing in the subcontinent a big part of having success is not only how you face spin but how you bowl spin as well.

"I do believe we've got talent there with Xavier and young Smithy, White as well; so we've got some spin bowling options, hopefully we'll learn a bit from yesterday and bowl better tomorrow."

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Meety on April 9, 2011, 11:51 GMT

    @wix99 - no, no, no, no White should NOT be anywhere near the Test team until he scores 600+ runs in the Shield at an average around 60. Bowling would be a bonus!

  • on April 9, 2011, 10:17 GMT

    Anyone who follows cricket in Oz knows that white can bowl. I for one have wondered why he hasnt bowled in ages. Good captaincy Michael. I like your attacking and unorthadox style. I'm sure success will follow much more than failure.

  • Ozcricketwriter on April 9, 2011, 9:51 GMT

    White definitely needs to bowl again. Or at least to be available to bowl if required.

  • wix99 on April 9, 2011, 6:28 GMT

    White needs to bowl to justify his place in the team and also for his future prospects. He may never be an attacking spin bowler, but if he can bat at six and bowl a few overs then he might be able to force his way into the Test team. He really needs a few big innings first though or else he could find himself out of the one day team.

  • Benkl on April 9, 2011, 1:41 GMT

    WHite is all class good idea to give hima bowl to try to bring some form. Despite his talent you have to say David Hussey should be there if he doesnt score 100 runs this series.

  • Meety on April 9, 2011, 0:19 GMT

    Onya Pup, White is good enough to bowl 2 to 5 overs in an ODI on a regular basis, he won't win many matches for Oz - but he will add a bit of variety.

  • ze_wolf on April 8, 2011, 22:57 GMT

    What is it going to take for Callum Ferguson to get a run in the team???? Hopefully Cameron White the bowler will be competing with Doherty or Smith the bowler rather than taking up a spot in the middle order.

  • on April 8, 2011, 18:21 GMT

    David Hussey,/ Shaun Marsh are really good option for him. They can do better than White.

  • landl47 on April 8, 2011, 18:02 GMT

    Clarke might as well try White. After all, he's got a better first-class bowling average than any of the specialist spinners who have played for Australia recently. However, you have to think that if Australia are thinking of White's bowling as integral to their future performance, there's a long dry period ahead. The days when a bowler of MacGill's quality couldn't get in the side are long gone.

  • Finn92 on April 8, 2011, 14:49 GMT

    I loved it when they used to consider him as a specialist spinner, thats the only reason he got to play tests! Truly village

  • Meety on April 9, 2011, 11:51 GMT

    @wix99 - no, no, no, no White should NOT be anywhere near the Test team until he scores 600+ runs in the Shield at an average around 60. Bowling would be a bonus!

  • on April 9, 2011, 10:17 GMT

    Anyone who follows cricket in Oz knows that white can bowl. I for one have wondered why he hasnt bowled in ages. Good captaincy Michael. I like your attacking and unorthadox style. I'm sure success will follow much more than failure.

  • Ozcricketwriter on April 9, 2011, 9:51 GMT

    White definitely needs to bowl again. Or at least to be available to bowl if required.

  • wix99 on April 9, 2011, 6:28 GMT

    White needs to bowl to justify his place in the team and also for his future prospects. He may never be an attacking spin bowler, but if he can bat at six and bowl a few overs then he might be able to force his way into the Test team. He really needs a few big innings first though or else he could find himself out of the one day team.

  • Benkl on April 9, 2011, 1:41 GMT

    WHite is all class good idea to give hima bowl to try to bring some form. Despite his talent you have to say David Hussey should be there if he doesnt score 100 runs this series.

  • Meety on April 9, 2011, 0:19 GMT

    Onya Pup, White is good enough to bowl 2 to 5 overs in an ODI on a regular basis, he won't win many matches for Oz - but he will add a bit of variety.

  • ze_wolf on April 8, 2011, 22:57 GMT

    What is it going to take for Callum Ferguson to get a run in the team???? Hopefully Cameron White the bowler will be competing with Doherty or Smith the bowler rather than taking up a spot in the middle order.

  • on April 8, 2011, 18:21 GMT

    David Hussey,/ Shaun Marsh are really good option for him. They can do better than White.

  • landl47 on April 8, 2011, 18:02 GMT

    Clarke might as well try White. After all, he's got a better first-class bowling average than any of the specialist spinners who have played for Australia recently. However, you have to think that if Australia are thinking of White's bowling as integral to their future performance, there's a long dry period ahead. The days when a bowler of MacGill's quality couldn't get in the side are long gone.

  • Finn92 on April 8, 2011, 14:49 GMT

    I loved it when they used to consider him as a specialist spinner, thats the only reason he got to play tests! Truly village

  • drvivek71179 on April 8, 2011, 14:03 GMT

    if dhoni can used yuvraj as a spinner and quite effectively he delivered .....this shows that what captain's confidence i player can do...if clarke give white some confidence he probably be a better bowler than yuvraj in conditions like subcontinent....

  • dsig3 on April 8, 2011, 13:54 GMT

    I like watching white bowl for comic relief alone. And I am an Aussie. Its only when I remember him losing a crucial session in India where we could have retained the Gavaskar trophy that I get angry. He didnt even have the guts to bowl properly and we had to resort to Mike Hussey he bowled that bad. His contract should have been set on fire that day, absolute disgrace. Its alright if you have a go and fail, but he wanted nothing to do with the ball when we needed him. Great captain, flawed cricketer.

  • mrwaka on April 8, 2011, 13:38 GMT

    I was very happy to hear Clarke got made captain of the Australian cricket team: I was sure that it would lead to the further disintegration of the cricket in Australia. this news makes me nervous though - what if this kid actually has a cricket brain in his head after all?! Good on ya pup. I have to admit I am not a fan of yours but if you keep this up, you will earn the respect of cricket lovers the world over.

  • crackers134 on April 8, 2011, 13:17 GMT

    About time White has a bowl. He is not that bad and it will revitalise his career.

  • Scgboy on April 8, 2011, 12:41 GMT

    warnies comeback aren't they talking about making him coach of India? plus his busy trying to bowl another maiden over;) so the man's got too much on his plate for that.

  • on April 8, 2011, 12:36 GMT

    Give chance for Ponting to bowl..

  • Something_Witty on April 8, 2011, 12:29 GMT

    Very good signs for Pup. A captain wiling to experiment is a good thing for Australia. All the best.

  • Percy_Fender on April 8, 2011, 12:08 GMT

    Cameron White played in the Australia India series which they lost 2-0. He bowled in that series and we have also seen him in the IPL. He is the Kumble- Afridi type of leg spinner which can be a handful in all formats of the game. The required forte for that type of bowling is accuracy and variations which comes after hours and hours of practice. I am sure White can do that and he could be quite an all rounder for Australia because he can bat very well in any case. I congratulate Clarke for having noticed that White is a bowler as well. A good captain is one who uses all his players to the very maximum. Dhoni has shown Yuvraj and all of us that the southpaw can be a brilliant left arm spinner in addition to his batting skills. I have not been very impressed with either of Doherty, or Smith or any other spin bowler brought forth by Australia till now in the fond hope that another Shane Warne lurks around the corner.Michael Clarke should be congratulated actually for his innovativeness.

  • on April 8, 2011, 11:51 GMT

    What the hell does Steve Smith ever do in the team rofl?

  • Behind_the_bowlers_arm on April 8, 2011, 11:43 GMT

    Ive liked what Clarke has said so far about getting back to basics and he also said that the time to ponder his thoughts on the future is in the break before Sri Lanka in August. This series is almost an irrelevance though i'm sure that those opposed to Clarke will take anything less than 3 crushing victories as evidence of the end of the world. What it is is a series reflecting typical ICC scheduling mindblowing in its stupidity. A 3 ODI series a week after the World Cup? You have to laugh dont you. It does give Clarke the chance to try a few things including making White bowl if he thinks thats useful. Myself , id drop him after this and start a policy of using 50 over cricket as a breeding ground for young players that Australia want to move towards Test cricket. If oldtimers like Ponting & Hussey want to play on i'd tell them to concentrate on Tests and take a look at the likes of Mitchell Marsh etc in this format.

  • DeepakY on April 8, 2011, 11:39 GMT

    High time for debate on Warne's comeback..... Its been too long since we heard the comment on his comeback. :-)

  • on April 8, 2011, 11:08 GMT

    baaaaahhhhhhhaaaaahaaaaahaahaaahaaahaaahaa!!!!!!! Great start Pup.... might be able to get Haddin to roll the arm over as well..... he might be a great spinner!!!!!

  • on April 8, 2011, 11:00 GMT

    Cameron initially came to the scene as an allrounder. He has a place in the Australian side only as an all rounder Clarkey has already hinted giving him bowling. He is of the Benaud type. He should vary his flight if he wants to get wickets.

  • on April 8, 2011, 10:57 GMT

    Great to see him bowling again

  • VivGilchrist on April 8, 2011, 10:56 GMT

    Might as well start bowling. If he stars performing they can drop Smith and Doherty and bring two cricketers into the team.

  • Okakaboka on April 8, 2011, 10:36 GMT

    Until now, I have NOT liked the idea of Clarke as Captain, however, his use of the bowling attack and MAKING White bowl was excellent, creative and thinking outside the box..which is different from the monostream captaincy of the last few years. I will bet this little bowling exercise might just lead to a total reversal of batting form for White. White has been batting So badly the problem has to be in his head. Yes, it may have blown up if White had been dispatched to all ends of the Earth..but White WAS a good bowler once upon a time..sounds like a fairy story I suppose. I think another inspired decision would be to drop Semi-spray gun Johnston and play Pattinson. This kid is only 20 and has enormous potential. I have seen him swing the ball significantly and getting him out on the park with Brett Lee standing at the top of his mark is just what he needs....as does Starc or Hazlewood when fit. Let the Evolution begin. Come on Clarke, make me eat my words. You are off to a good start!

  • on April 8, 2011, 10:28 GMT

    so finally clarke is doing something which he was thinking since ponting captaincy :) but didnt able to convince him

  • thewayitwass on April 8, 2011, 9:54 GMT

    clarke already showing good signs of leadership.. too small and too early to start shouting his praises, but this is a good move.. getting the most outta his players is a good start.. [pnting shoulda done this with katich! (i guess his shoulder was a factor)

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • thewayitwass on April 8, 2011, 9:54 GMT

    clarke already showing good signs of leadership.. too small and too early to start shouting his praises, but this is a good move.. getting the most outta his players is a good start.. [pnting shoulda done this with katich! (i guess his shoulder was a factor)

  • on April 8, 2011, 10:28 GMT

    so finally clarke is doing something which he was thinking since ponting captaincy :) but didnt able to convince him

  • Okakaboka on April 8, 2011, 10:36 GMT

    Until now, I have NOT liked the idea of Clarke as Captain, however, his use of the bowling attack and MAKING White bowl was excellent, creative and thinking outside the box..which is different from the monostream captaincy of the last few years. I will bet this little bowling exercise might just lead to a total reversal of batting form for White. White has been batting So badly the problem has to be in his head. Yes, it may have blown up if White had been dispatched to all ends of the Earth..but White WAS a good bowler once upon a time..sounds like a fairy story I suppose. I think another inspired decision would be to drop Semi-spray gun Johnston and play Pattinson. This kid is only 20 and has enormous potential. I have seen him swing the ball significantly and getting him out on the park with Brett Lee standing at the top of his mark is just what he needs....as does Starc or Hazlewood when fit. Let the Evolution begin. Come on Clarke, make me eat my words. You are off to a good start!

  • VivGilchrist on April 8, 2011, 10:56 GMT

    Might as well start bowling. If he stars performing they can drop Smith and Doherty and bring two cricketers into the team.

  • on April 8, 2011, 10:57 GMT

    Great to see him bowling again

  • on April 8, 2011, 11:00 GMT

    Cameron initially came to the scene as an allrounder. He has a place in the Australian side only as an all rounder Clarkey has already hinted giving him bowling. He is of the Benaud type. He should vary his flight if he wants to get wickets.

  • on April 8, 2011, 11:08 GMT

    baaaaahhhhhhhaaaaahaaaaahaahaaahaaahaaahaa!!!!!!! Great start Pup.... might be able to get Haddin to roll the arm over as well..... he might be a great spinner!!!!!

  • DeepakY on April 8, 2011, 11:39 GMT

    High time for debate on Warne's comeback..... Its been too long since we heard the comment on his comeback. :-)

  • Behind_the_bowlers_arm on April 8, 2011, 11:43 GMT

    Ive liked what Clarke has said so far about getting back to basics and he also said that the time to ponder his thoughts on the future is in the break before Sri Lanka in August. This series is almost an irrelevance though i'm sure that those opposed to Clarke will take anything less than 3 crushing victories as evidence of the end of the world. What it is is a series reflecting typical ICC scheduling mindblowing in its stupidity. A 3 ODI series a week after the World Cup? You have to laugh dont you. It does give Clarke the chance to try a few things including making White bowl if he thinks thats useful. Myself , id drop him after this and start a policy of using 50 over cricket as a breeding ground for young players that Australia want to move towards Test cricket. If oldtimers like Ponting & Hussey want to play on i'd tell them to concentrate on Tests and take a look at the likes of Mitchell Marsh etc in this format.

  • on April 8, 2011, 11:51 GMT

    What the hell does Steve Smith ever do in the team rofl?