England v West Indies, 1st Test, Lord's, 4th day May 20, 2012

I'm glad Broad's in my team - Swann


Graeme Swann has backed Stuart Broad to break records after taking his match haul against West Indies to 11 wickets and becoming only the fourth player to score a hundred, take five in an innings and 10 in a match at Lord's. However, it is far from certain that Broad's career-best performances will secure England a victory after a day of resilience from West Indies' batsmen before two late strikes by Kemar Roach set pulses racing.

When Broad removed Darren Sammy, who played a key part in extending West Indies' lead to testing proportions, he became the first England bowler to take 10 on this ground since Ian Botham against New Zealand in 1978.

"Hats off to him he's on all three honours boards which is almost unique," Swann said. "He's going to be a guy who breaks record after record in his career and I'm just glad he's in my team. He admitted he's not been in the greatest of form for Nottinghamshire but he's a big match player and as soon as he got his first spell out of the way in this match he's bowled superbly."

However, it was Swann himself who claimed the wicket England most cherished when he finally trapped Shivnarine Chanderpaul lbw to end his 250-ball 91 which took his match occupation of the crease to 425 deliveries.

"It's always nice to get him out. It would have been nicer if he'd missed a sweep on 10 or 11 rather than 91," he said. "His partnership with [Marlon] Samuels showed if you bat with application on that pitch you become difficult to shift."

Application is something England will need plenty of on the final day after closing on 10 for 2 following the late dismissals of Andrew Strauss and nightwatchman Jimmy Anderson. During the winter they failed to chase 145 in Abu Dhabi, collapsing to 72 all out albeit on a very different surface, but Swann, always a glass-half-full cricketer, said the task was still well within hand.

"It's unfortunate to lose the skipper but it was always going to be a tricky 15 minutes batting in the gloom against a world-class bowler like Kemar Roach. Luckily we've got through relatively unscathed, we've got Trotty and Cooky at the crease so we'll very confident that they can see us through.

"We know the wicket is very good for batting, if anything it's better than the first two days. That tends to happen at Lord's. Hopefully the ball won't talk much like it didn't for us today. Once it gets to 30-35 overs old it seems to go a bit out of shape and not be very responsive. We beat the outside edge a lot but couldn't pick up the edges we did in the first innings. That was frustrating to say the least but I thought we stuck at our guns very well and to get a chase of less than 200 we're happy with."

Ottis Gibson, West Indies' coach, took great heart from his team's performance especially that of the batsmen who kept England in the field for most of the day. Regardless of the result on Monday he knows that the visitors have already surpassed many of the expectations surrounding them when they arrived.

"I haven't seen any fifth-day tickets so I'm not sure they expected it to go five days," he said. "We are coming back to make them fight for the rest of the runs. If we do well enough to win then great, we'll celebrate, but whatever happens when we get off that bus tomorrow we are coming here to fight. It will be a battle but we are up for that.

"If we can make some early inroads, like Trott and Kevin Pietersen who can take the game away from you, we've always felt we have an attack that can cause quite a few problems. It will be a good opportunity for them tomorrow."

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • John on May 23, 2012, 21:39 GMT

    @A_Vacant_Slip on (May 22 2012, 22:18 PM GMT) - Thanks bud. I just feel that it is a mark of character when a guy has a horror over like that and he takes it on the chin and comes back stronger. Broad strikes me as the sort of character who never shies away from anything. I'm sure any team what want a player of Broad's character in their side - regardless of how you judge him talentwise

  • John on May 23, 2012, 21:35 GMT

    @Shan156 on (May 23 2012, 14:50 PM GMT) I always think it's best - whether it be by our fans or by others against us to just say Pak played some great cricket even if we (our batsmen were woeful).Obviously playing in different conditions has to at some point be answered. What I hate is when team's fans aren't magmanimous enough to take it on the chin and have to say wait until this ... That is one reason why I was so proud of our fans (as a whole) and the Pak fans (as a whole) in that we weren't saying wait until you get to Eng .... and Pak fans weren't gloating/sniping.Mutual respect

  • Shanmugam on May 23, 2012, 14:50 GMT

    @JG2704, I am not saying Pak. won't be successful away as they have been in the UAE. I am simply saying judgment should be reserved till they show results outside. Isn't that what us England fans are told every time by subcontinent fans? Same with Ajmal.

  • John on May 23, 2012, 8:31 GMT

    @Shan156 on (May 23 2012, 04:54 AM GMT) tbh - in the main I'm not seeing too much from Pak fans. Even after they beat us , most refrained from the ugly gloating you get from others. I think Ajmal would perform elsewhere these days. It is unproven , but we can't just say Pak can only play at home until they play away.

  • Roo on May 23, 2012, 7:41 GMT

    You have to smile at the Broad whingers... Broad is currently only a little off Bothams bowling & batting stats yet Botham probably peaked as an allrounder at between 26-28 y.o. while I see Broad as just beginning to hit his straps with many years (8+) as a top level cricketer... Another interesting stat is that Bresnan currently has better batting & bowling average stats than Botham finished with - just shows what strength there is in this current England lower order...

  • Shanmugam on May 23, 2012, 4:54 GMT

    @JG2704, lol. BTW, I replied earlier to your message but for some reason, cricinfo chose not to publish it. Yes, you are right. Some Pak. fans were quite humble in victory but we do keep hearing how they are the best because they have stayed undefeated in a series for 2 years. However, in that period they have only played the Windies away (the series was drawn) and beaten SL and England in the UAE. Ajmal was impressive but shouldn't he perform everywhere in the world against all opposition before he is crowned the best spinner in the world, leave alone the best ever. They said that for Anderson and Swann, so surely Ajmal is no exception.

  • Andrew on May 23, 2012, 1:11 GMT

    @jmcilhinney - "...as I recall he looked fairly good in the last Ashes..." - its nit picking from me because there is not much to gloat about from the last Ashes but.... Broad averaged over 80 with a S/R over 200! @HumungousFungus - I agree, I thought he was way overrated, right up until the UAE series. I still think there are some question marks, but he is definately ticking the right boxes atm.

  • Sharon on May 22, 2012, 22:18 GMT

    Oh! dear! I just checked this thread and yes @JG2704 - you are right, there is some terrible rubbish here about Broad 6 6's. The thing is, India boys (comedian) love to talk about this because it is all thay can hang on to. They forget that in 2011 Stuart Broad was made player of the series Vs India. No India player was in the running for that. So who had the last laugh, eh? PS Like your post - you are true enthusiast!

  • John on May 22, 2012, 21:37 GMT

    @valvolux Broad will be gutted that such a balanced commentor has criticised him. Still , I think I heard that he'd moved up to 3 in the ICC rankings. I know it's not the same as having your seal of approval but at least it's some consolation

  • John on May 21, 2012, 20:32 GMT

    @Shan156 - hello. Agree with practically all you say and I think the fact that he came back from the 6x6 Yuvraj over to do what he has done is a credit to him. He is a fiercely determined player and we are proud to have him. I'd probably say he is my favourite Eng player because of his character as much as his ability. One thing I will disagree with you on is "Pak. fans should stop blowing this trumpet". I think the Pak fans by and large have been very respectful and while praising their own side and celebrated their victory (which is fair enough) have not resorted to sniping/gloating etc. I think you'll find the majority of those are from another country

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