England news April 27, 2013

Elbow has 'never felt better' - Swann

ESPNcricinfo staff
23

Graeme Swann is itching to return to action after declaring that his elbow has "never felt better" following the surgery he had after being ruled out of the Test series in New Zealand.

He is set play his first match of the season for Nottinghamshire against Durham in the County Championship next week, his last chance for first-class cricket with his county before the opening Test of the season against New Zealand at Lord's on May 16. But there is the England Lions game against New Zealand if the selectors feel he needs more overs.

Swann has been bowling in the nets during Nottinghamshire's current match against Derbyshire and is feeling no ill effects after having "13 or 14" pieces of bone removed from his right elbow during the operation in the USA, significantly fewer than came out during the first surgery in 2009 when 29 fragments were found.

"The elbow feels great," Swann said while speaking at a Chance to Shine event to mark the two millionth child to be included in the scheme. "I've been bowling with it over the last two days in the nets and it has never felt better. The aim was always for me to come back on Monday against Durham and that is what is going to happen. I was just bored with stupid bowling in the nets and wanted to get back in the game."

"I was actually hoping to play this week against Derby but it just swelled up a little bit and I was told to get back in my box. I'm very happy now but this is the last time in my career I will have elbow surgery."

When Swann was ruled out of the New Zealand series in March, on the opening day of the first Test, he was optimistic that the surgery would be a success but admitted the occasional doubt.

"You go through a mixture of emotions," he said. "You have the panic, then the optimism, then the odd pessimistic day pops its head out of nowhere. But the surgery wasn't as serious as last time and my rehab has gone perfectly."

England missed both Swann's bowling and his on-field spark in New Zealand as the attack laboured to take 20 wickets. With Australia's likely line-up for the Ashes potentially including four left handers in the top order he could be in for a bumper season while he is also a crucial cog in the one-day team which has a Champions Trophy to aim for.

Swann's recovery is a piece of positive news for England in a week where Kevin Pietersen has been ruled out until at least the Ashes with his bruised knee taking longer to heel than expected.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Shan156 on April 28, 2013, 4:55 GMT

    To me, Swann is as important as, if not more than, KP in the Eng. side. I say let him be rested for the NZ series and get ready for the CT and the all important Ashes. I would also pick Tredwell ahead of Panesar for the NZ series. The Ashes would be much closer than some people think. Aus may have been hammered in India but the English conditions will suit their pacemen. Clarke is in great form. If he gets support from 2 or more batsmen, it will be tough for Eng considering our pacemen have not been in the best of forms for a while now. With so many left handers in the Aussie team, Swann is very important.

  • Shan156 on May 1, 2013, 20:15 GMT

    @JG2704, I meant to say the same thing. In a 2 man spin attack, I will play Swann and Monty; if it is going to be 1 spinner, then it will be Swann, if not available, JT, if not available, Monty would be my preference.

  • JG2704 on May 1, 2013, 9:14 GMT

    @Meety - Would definitely give him a go. I think Eng have gone too far the other way with 2 of their policies.

    1 - . Re selection -While we don't want a revolving door situation - we don't want it bolted shut 2- Re resting players. I think we're overdoing that to an extent where our players are more likely to be undercooked than get injured. I think the Sky team were saying that players of yesteryear may have gone on for longer if their workloads were managed better which maybe true. However , I seem to recall their were often weeks where Counties (inc England players) were playing 2 x 3 day games and a JPL game on a Sunday , so the big improvements in rest periods for county players alone has already increased the likelihood of longevity without further rest

    @Shan156 - Would still play Monty ahead of JT in a 2 man spin attack but would go for JT if Swann was injured. I've noticed Monty has not really been among the wickets this season so far either

  • Meety on April 30, 2013, 2:18 GMT

    @JG2704 on (April 29, 2013, 17:56 GMT) - mate, no idea if Woakes is a pace version of Swanny, but as I have said heaps of times before, the bits I see of Woakes - he's all class. I'd have him @ 6 or #7 in the England Test team straight away, just on batting alone, with his bowling as a bonus. I have always felt that Bresnan's Test batting average was above the odds, but with Woakes he looks like a batsmen & I can see him averaging around 40 in Tests with the bat & low 30s with the ball assuming a decent run - sort of what Watson SHOULD of been doing, but with (fingers crossed) less injury concerns!!!!

    @ landl47 on (April 29, 2013, 20:52 GMT) - I think we'll leave it at how you said earlier "...England are slight favorites..." - with me confident that the gap between teams is minimal. Otherwise we'll be talking to the cows come home about better pacers vs worse batsmen etc & the form guide is a bit sketchy for bost both sides. Not inc Indian tours I'd have Oz way ahead, but now.....

  • Shan156 on April 29, 2013, 22:11 GMT

    @JG2704, I don't think we will field 2 spinners in any of the summer tests. But, if Swann is unavailable, then Tredwell should take his place. As well as Monty performed in the SC, I don't think he will cause much damage elsewhere including, and especially, at home. I know Tredwell has not played tests yet but I think he will do well against NZ. I also think we should play Onions ahead of Broad against NZ. We could be brave and even rest Jimmy but the way NZ performed against our 1st choice pace attack in NZ, we would want our best XI.

  • landl47 on April 29, 2013, 20:52 GMT

    @Meety: I, on the other hand, would be quite happy to see Anderson, Finn and Broad less successful than Swann, because it means that the one area where Aus has a good side, the seam bowlers, would be equally struggling- and Lyon isn't in Swann's class, especially against the England right-handers.

    @Lliam Flynn: no, Swann isn't in Warne or Murali's class. But then, he's not going to be bowling to Hayden, Langer, Ponting. Martyn, the Waughs and Gilchrist, is he? He averages more than 4 wickets a game, historically a very good record, and if he gets a pitch that does a bit he usually takes wickets. In the 2009 Ashes, he only bowled one over in the first innings at Lord's, because the seamers bundled Aus out for 215, but he took 4-91 in the 2nd inns. At the Oval, which usually does take spin, he took 8-158 in the match. Which were the two games England won? Lord's and the Oval. If, and it's a big if, he gets turning wickets, I think England wins those games.

  • JG2704 on April 29, 2013, 17:56 GMT

    @Meety - If he's playing the next CC match I reckon Eng/the surgeons are pretty confident he'll be ok - they rarely risk players like that. Obviously the CT is a way off so we''ll have to see how he goes.

    Actually Landl reminded me of something I thought but maybe didn't post.

    Re Woakes , in the recent Somerset game , I thought he looked particularly good in the 1st inns vs Trescothick and was unlucky not to take his wicket. I wonder if he is like a pace version of Swann in that he is particularly good vs left handers and if so I think they were saying that Aus are likely to have 4 LHs in their top 6. Food for thought

  • Meety on April 29, 2013, 10:04 GMT

    @JG2704 on (April 28, 2013, 8:46 GMT) - if Swann can't play the CT, it would nearly be a miracle for England to win the event (on the back of no KP). I think he really risks re-injuring himself he rushes back which could make him a non-starter.

    @landl47 on (April 29, 2013, 0:04 GMT) - I am sort of happy if Swann is taking wickets during the Ashes, as it SHOULD mean, that Anderson, Finn & Broad are NOT! LOL! The left hand factor will make things very interesting for Swann. Regarding the pitches, I would be bemused if the pitches are noticably spin-friendly, but I actually think it would be better for Oz if it were that way. Why? - because the Oz problem against spin is fairly specific to Indian conditions. There is more variable bounce & uneven pace in India which is what makes Oz batsmen indecisive against spin. Those factors shouldn't effect Oz in England (although I do recall what happenned on the Oz A-tour of England last year!)

  • on April 29, 2013, 7:56 GMT

    I am trying to understand the euphoria over Swann. For starters, his average is 29.10. This means he is a reasonably good bowler but definitely not in the league of Warne or Murali. Going into Statsguru he averages 30.55 at home, 40.13 vs Australia (from 2009 so no killer side back then), and his best figures come vs Bangladesh/Sri Lanka/India/Pakistan in Asia which isn't too surprising. About the only ray of light is his average of 26.01 versus lefties, but if you take out lefties in the helpful conditions in Asia he comes back to pretty much his base av of 29. Final conclusion - solid but not a great in English conditions and talk of the Aussies trembling before this colossus of spin is giving him a little too much credit. Would be interesting to see if some curators spice up the pitches a little for him.

  • landl47 on April 29, 2013, 0:19 GMT

    @Jayzuz: your 5 bowlers are all talented, but remember that they are: Patto (broke down against SA, currently recovering from abdominal surgery); Starc (recovering from foot surgery); Harris (latest injury of many, achilles troubles); Faulkner (never played a test) and Bird (recovering from stress fractures in his back). It's a bit dodgy, isn't it?

    Warner, Hughes and Watson also have talent, but 8 tons in 84 combined matches means they don't come good very often. For England, Cook has 24 in 90, Trott 9 in 41, Pietersen 22 in 94 and Bell 17 in 86. Clarke is of course as good as or better than any of them, with 23 in 92, but there's a big drop-off in consistency after him.

    I don't take Aus lightly and neither I'm sure do the England players. If Aus's bowlers are fit and the batsmen get on a roll, they could easily win. However, going into the series, you'd have to say that the numbers favour England.

  • Shan156 on April 28, 2013, 4:55 GMT

    To me, Swann is as important as, if not more than, KP in the Eng. side. I say let him be rested for the NZ series and get ready for the CT and the all important Ashes. I would also pick Tredwell ahead of Panesar for the NZ series. The Ashes would be much closer than some people think. Aus may have been hammered in India but the English conditions will suit their pacemen. Clarke is in great form. If he gets support from 2 or more batsmen, it will be tough for Eng considering our pacemen have not been in the best of forms for a while now. With so many left handers in the Aussie team, Swann is very important.

  • Shan156 on May 1, 2013, 20:15 GMT

    @JG2704, I meant to say the same thing. In a 2 man spin attack, I will play Swann and Monty; if it is going to be 1 spinner, then it will be Swann, if not available, JT, if not available, Monty would be my preference.

  • JG2704 on May 1, 2013, 9:14 GMT

    @Meety - Would definitely give him a go. I think Eng have gone too far the other way with 2 of their policies.

    1 - . Re selection -While we don't want a revolving door situation - we don't want it bolted shut 2- Re resting players. I think we're overdoing that to an extent where our players are more likely to be undercooked than get injured. I think the Sky team were saying that players of yesteryear may have gone on for longer if their workloads were managed better which maybe true. However , I seem to recall their were often weeks where Counties (inc England players) were playing 2 x 3 day games and a JPL game on a Sunday , so the big improvements in rest periods for county players alone has already increased the likelihood of longevity without further rest

    @Shan156 - Would still play Monty ahead of JT in a 2 man spin attack but would go for JT if Swann was injured. I've noticed Monty has not really been among the wickets this season so far either

  • Meety on April 30, 2013, 2:18 GMT

    @JG2704 on (April 29, 2013, 17:56 GMT) - mate, no idea if Woakes is a pace version of Swanny, but as I have said heaps of times before, the bits I see of Woakes - he's all class. I'd have him @ 6 or #7 in the England Test team straight away, just on batting alone, with his bowling as a bonus. I have always felt that Bresnan's Test batting average was above the odds, but with Woakes he looks like a batsmen & I can see him averaging around 40 in Tests with the bat & low 30s with the ball assuming a decent run - sort of what Watson SHOULD of been doing, but with (fingers crossed) less injury concerns!!!!

    @ landl47 on (April 29, 2013, 20:52 GMT) - I think we'll leave it at how you said earlier "...England are slight favorites..." - with me confident that the gap between teams is minimal. Otherwise we'll be talking to the cows come home about better pacers vs worse batsmen etc & the form guide is a bit sketchy for bost both sides. Not inc Indian tours I'd have Oz way ahead, but now.....

  • Shan156 on April 29, 2013, 22:11 GMT

    @JG2704, I don't think we will field 2 spinners in any of the summer tests. But, if Swann is unavailable, then Tredwell should take his place. As well as Monty performed in the SC, I don't think he will cause much damage elsewhere including, and especially, at home. I know Tredwell has not played tests yet but I think he will do well against NZ. I also think we should play Onions ahead of Broad against NZ. We could be brave and even rest Jimmy but the way NZ performed against our 1st choice pace attack in NZ, we would want our best XI.

  • landl47 on April 29, 2013, 20:52 GMT

    @Meety: I, on the other hand, would be quite happy to see Anderson, Finn and Broad less successful than Swann, because it means that the one area where Aus has a good side, the seam bowlers, would be equally struggling- and Lyon isn't in Swann's class, especially against the England right-handers.

    @Lliam Flynn: no, Swann isn't in Warne or Murali's class. But then, he's not going to be bowling to Hayden, Langer, Ponting. Martyn, the Waughs and Gilchrist, is he? He averages more than 4 wickets a game, historically a very good record, and if he gets a pitch that does a bit he usually takes wickets. In the 2009 Ashes, he only bowled one over in the first innings at Lord's, because the seamers bundled Aus out for 215, but he took 4-91 in the 2nd inns. At the Oval, which usually does take spin, he took 8-158 in the match. Which were the two games England won? Lord's and the Oval. If, and it's a big if, he gets turning wickets, I think England wins those games.

  • JG2704 on April 29, 2013, 17:56 GMT

    @Meety - If he's playing the next CC match I reckon Eng/the surgeons are pretty confident he'll be ok - they rarely risk players like that. Obviously the CT is a way off so we''ll have to see how he goes.

    Actually Landl reminded me of something I thought but maybe didn't post.

    Re Woakes , in the recent Somerset game , I thought he looked particularly good in the 1st inns vs Trescothick and was unlucky not to take his wicket. I wonder if he is like a pace version of Swann in that he is particularly good vs left handers and if so I think they were saying that Aus are likely to have 4 LHs in their top 6. Food for thought

  • Meety on April 29, 2013, 10:04 GMT

    @JG2704 on (April 28, 2013, 8:46 GMT) - if Swann can't play the CT, it would nearly be a miracle for England to win the event (on the back of no KP). I think he really risks re-injuring himself he rushes back which could make him a non-starter.

    @landl47 on (April 29, 2013, 0:04 GMT) - I am sort of happy if Swann is taking wickets during the Ashes, as it SHOULD mean, that Anderson, Finn & Broad are NOT! LOL! The left hand factor will make things very interesting for Swann. Regarding the pitches, I would be bemused if the pitches are noticably spin-friendly, but I actually think it would be better for Oz if it were that way. Why? - because the Oz problem against spin is fairly specific to Indian conditions. There is more variable bounce & uneven pace in India which is what makes Oz batsmen indecisive against spin. Those factors shouldn't effect Oz in England (although I do recall what happenned on the Oz A-tour of England last year!)

  • on April 29, 2013, 7:56 GMT

    I am trying to understand the euphoria over Swann. For starters, his average is 29.10. This means he is a reasonably good bowler but definitely not in the league of Warne or Murali. Going into Statsguru he averages 30.55 at home, 40.13 vs Australia (from 2009 so no killer side back then), and his best figures come vs Bangladesh/Sri Lanka/India/Pakistan in Asia which isn't too surprising. About the only ray of light is his average of 26.01 versus lefties, but if you take out lefties in the helpful conditions in Asia he comes back to pretty much his base av of 29. Final conclusion - solid but not a great in English conditions and talk of the Aussies trembling before this colossus of spin is giving him a little too much credit. Would be interesting to see if some curators spice up the pitches a little for him.

  • landl47 on April 29, 2013, 0:19 GMT

    @Jayzuz: your 5 bowlers are all talented, but remember that they are: Patto (broke down against SA, currently recovering from abdominal surgery); Starc (recovering from foot surgery); Harris (latest injury of many, achilles troubles); Faulkner (never played a test) and Bird (recovering from stress fractures in his back). It's a bit dodgy, isn't it?

    Warner, Hughes and Watson also have talent, but 8 tons in 84 combined matches means they don't come good very often. For England, Cook has 24 in 90, Trott 9 in 41, Pietersen 22 in 94 and Bell 17 in 86. Clarke is of course as good as or better than any of them, with 23 in 92, but there's a big drop-off in consistency after him.

    I don't take Aus lightly and neither I'm sure do the England players. If Aus's bowlers are fit and the batsmen get on a roll, they could easily win. However, going into the series, you'd have to say that the numbers favour England.

  • landl47 on April 29, 2013, 0:04 GMT

    @Meety: I think Hauritz got a raw deal, but the fact is that when Swann is given a wicket with a bit of help he's pretty good, especially against left-handers. One of the reasons I think England are slight favorites is that Aus has so many L/Hs; if any of the 5 wickets are turners, then I think England wins those tests. I don't dismiss Lyon, but he too, as an offspinner, would be more troublesome to left-handers and England only has one (Cook) against at least 4 (maybe as many as 6) Aussies in the top 7 plus Starc and Patto.

  • Front-Foot-Lunge on April 28, 2013, 20:35 GMT

    Swanny's back and Australia have yet another reason to tremble with fear at the thought of these B2B Ashes. Australia have been through a five year long saga over spin bowlers, replacing one after the next, usually straight after an Ashes series. England of course haven't had that problem, possessing not only Swann, but also the world's best 'spin twins' along with Monty. To describe this gulf between the teams as massive would be an understatement.

  • JG2704 on April 28, 2013, 8:49 GMT

    @Shan156 on (April 28, 2013, 4:55 GMT) - Agree re Swann's importance in the CT. But re NZ or Aus , I doubt 2 spinners will be used. If conditions are right for 2 spinners I'd still go Swann/Monty but if Swann is unavailable then Tredwell is a much better bet as a lone spinner

  • JG2704 on April 28, 2013, 8:46 GMT

    Re the Swann vs Hauritz comms - I'd say Swann came on to his peak form in 2010/11 , but Hauritz was probably better in 2009 than Beer is now and definitely better than Doherty is now. I wonder if Eng will be confident in him playing in the CT. We're already missing our most important batsman so it will be good to have our best bowler out there

  • 22many on April 28, 2013, 5:52 GMT

    I am willing to suggest that NZ might just be a little harder than what many are suggesting...in fact I would go as far to say that NZ will be harder to beat than the Aussies.

  • Jayzuz on April 28, 2013, 1:37 GMT

    Swann makes a huge difference to the team. If he is under par or absent, England will be severely weakened - as we saw in NZ, where ENG were outplayed by NZ most of the tour.

    The problems with AUS batting have been well stated, but the English press have overstated the issue, & there has been a very foolish ignoring of the fact that AUS has a very good bowling attack in the making, esp. for ENG-style conditions. How a team with fast bowlers like Pattinson, Starc, Harris, Falkner & Bird could be called "the worst ever" is beyond me - dangerous hubris. Most of the bowlers are virtually allrounders, so the tail is v short. The other factor is that players like Warner, Hughes & Watson are not quite as talentless as the English presume - if any of them develop a bit of form they can be v. dangerous. It seems to me the general ENG press assessment is one of a worst case scenario for AUS, ignoring far more positive & realistic scenarios. ENG way overconfident at this point.

  • Meety on April 28, 2013, 0:06 GMT

    Gee, as said earlier, I would want to take it easy until the swelling stops.

    Hope he is right for the Ashes.

    @landl47 on (April 27, 2013, 12:27 GMT) - I back what Mitty says about our spinners in that 10-test period you referred to. If you look back at the head to head battle between Hauritz & Swann, Hauritz at the very least equalled Swanny. His not playing any further Ashes Tests was a disgrace - would not of changed the course of the 10/11 Ashes - but COULD of been a series changer in 09 (it was that close). Since then, Lyon has proved himself to be better than Hauritz, & I think that he MIGHT surprise some English fans (the ones who think he is a non-spinner)!

  • Mitty2 on April 27, 2013, 13:52 GMT

    @landl47, very good point on swann averaging 40, but our spinners averaging alot worse (granted that doherty and beer are C grade spinners), although in '09 hauritz averaged 32.10 for ten wickets in three tests compared to swann's 40.50 for 14 in five, so not much should be taken from that average. And yes, his style isn't perfect for india, but he still had a phenomenal series!!

    Also RE: broad, bresnan and Anderson, I can confidently say that if England forgot about broad and bresnan, and had say, an attack of Roland-jones, onions, swann and Anderson, they'd have the ashes in the bag. Broad and finn's form has both been disappointing, and onions averaged what, 14 last year in the county and TRJ under 20? It's in England so play your quicks who are most suited and are in the most form!

    @milhouse79, the Doherty reference was said with tongue firmly pressed in cheek. And warne's bowling is not suited to low and slow wickets, whereas panesar's is. Not sure of the relevance!

  • landl47 on April 27, 2013, 12:27 GMT

    Swann is vitsl to England's Ashes hopes. With a side full of left-handers (Cowan, Warner, Hughes, Rogers, Khawaja, Wade, Starc, Pattinson) at least 6 of whom will probably be in the first test line-up England need him to be fit and ready to go. I agree with Mitty that England's pace attack is inconsistent, though it was good to see Anderson, Broad and Bresnan all getting wickets in the current county matches. Swann might average 40 against Australia, but that includes two matchwinning performances (Oval 2009 and Adelaide 2010/11) and besides, look at the Aus spinners' averages in the 10 Ashes games Swann has played!

    I hope he will have some helpful wickets to bowl on; not Indian-style dustbowls, but wickets which allow some turn and bounce. He outbowled the Indian spinners in India, and we saw what happened to Aus over there. Just make it a fair contest between bat and ball and let the chips fall where they may.

  • Jaffa79 on April 27, 2013, 12:22 GMT

    @ Mitty2. Granted that Monty did not bowl that well in NZ and he does lack variety, it is foolhardy to dismiss him as a player that can only take wickets in the subcontinent. By the way, Asian batsman are the best players of spin and spinners can really struggle against them. Warne got mullered there more than a few times remember! Panesar = 161 wickets @ 33. Doherty = 7 wickets @ 78. Not a comparison really!

  • RednWhiteArmy on April 27, 2013, 12:03 GMT

    Excellent! Swann & Commanderson are as hungry as ever & must be itching to boost their stats by taking the easy ashes wickets on offer to them. haha just kidding aussies, dont be so precious. It should be a good series.

  • Mitty2 on April 27, 2013, 11:26 GMT

    Good news for England. Panesar looked incredibly innocuous against new Zealand - I daresay Xavier Doherty could've beaten the bat more - and with his style will only take wickets in the sub continent. As our mate @front-foot-lunge would say: "panesar is a seamer and couldn't turn a bowl to save himself". His success against India is reminiscent to jadeja against us, bowling accurately at 90-95km/h and getting wickets from pitch variation. Left arm spinners have had success in England, but by watching panesar against a notoriously fragile batting line up in new Zealand (more so than ours), England could do better with their back up ODI spinner - tredwell.

    With the propensity of the England pace attack to struggle when the bowl is old, swann is almost their most important player. He is a very smart bowler, and although he averages 40 against us, he's very good against the lefties. With an inconsistent and recently a somewhat mediocre pace attack: swann is absolutely key for England.

  • LillianThomson on April 27, 2013, 11:06 GMT

    I'm a doctor: will somebody please tell him to slow down his return?

    If the elbow is still swelling up after net practice it means that he's a few weeks ahead of himself with his return. He needs to slow down, or he'll jeopardise his Ashes participation.

  • LillianThomson on April 27, 2013, 11:06 GMT

    I'm a doctor: will somebody please tell him to slow down his return?

    If the elbow is still swelling up after net practice it means that he's a few weeks ahead of himself with his return. He needs to slow down, or he'll jeopardise his Ashes participation.

  • Mitty2 on April 27, 2013, 11:26 GMT

    Good news for England. Panesar looked incredibly innocuous against new Zealand - I daresay Xavier Doherty could've beaten the bat more - and with his style will only take wickets in the sub continent. As our mate @front-foot-lunge would say: "panesar is a seamer and couldn't turn a bowl to save himself". His success against India is reminiscent to jadeja against us, bowling accurately at 90-95km/h and getting wickets from pitch variation. Left arm spinners have had success in England, but by watching panesar against a notoriously fragile batting line up in new Zealand (more so than ours), England could do better with their back up ODI spinner - tredwell.

    With the propensity of the England pace attack to struggle when the bowl is old, swann is almost their most important player. He is a very smart bowler, and although he averages 40 against us, he's very good against the lefties. With an inconsistent and recently a somewhat mediocre pace attack: swann is absolutely key for England.

  • RednWhiteArmy on April 27, 2013, 12:03 GMT

    Excellent! Swann & Commanderson are as hungry as ever & must be itching to boost their stats by taking the easy ashes wickets on offer to them. haha just kidding aussies, dont be so precious. It should be a good series.

  • Jaffa79 on April 27, 2013, 12:22 GMT

    @ Mitty2. Granted that Monty did not bowl that well in NZ and he does lack variety, it is foolhardy to dismiss him as a player that can only take wickets in the subcontinent. By the way, Asian batsman are the best players of spin and spinners can really struggle against them. Warne got mullered there more than a few times remember! Panesar = 161 wickets @ 33. Doherty = 7 wickets @ 78. Not a comparison really!

  • landl47 on April 27, 2013, 12:27 GMT

    Swann is vitsl to England's Ashes hopes. With a side full of left-handers (Cowan, Warner, Hughes, Rogers, Khawaja, Wade, Starc, Pattinson) at least 6 of whom will probably be in the first test line-up England need him to be fit and ready to go. I agree with Mitty that England's pace attack is inconsistent, though it was good to see Anderson, Broad and Bresnan all getting wickets in the current county matches. Swann might average 40 against Australia, but that includes two matchwinning performances (Oval 2009 and Adelaide 2010/11) and besides, look at the Aus spinners' averages in the 10 Ashes games Swann has played!

    I hope he will have some helpful wickets to bowl on; not Indian-style dustbowls, but wickets which allow some turn and bounce. He outbowled the Indian spinners in India, and we saw what happened to Aus over there. Just make it a fair contest between bat and ball and let the chips fall where they may.

  • Mitty2 on April 27, 2013, 13:52 GMT

    @landl47, very good point on swann averaging 40, but our spinners averaging alot worse (granted that doherty and beer are C grade spinners), although in '09 hauritz averaged 32.10 for ten wickets in three tests compared to swann's 40.50 for 14 in five, so not much should be taken from that average. And yes, his style isn't perfect for india, but he still had a phenomenal series!!

    Also RE: broad, bresnan and Anderson, I can confidently say that if England forgot about broad and bresnan, and had say, an attack of Roland-jones, onions, swann and Anderson, they'd have the ashes in the bag. Broad and finn's form has both been disappointing, and onions averaged what, 14 last year in the county and TRJ under 20? It's in England so play your quicks who are most suited and are in the most form!

    @milhouse79, the Doherty reference was said with tongue firmly pressed in cheek. And warne's bowling is not suited to low and slow wickets, whereas panesar's is. Not sure of the relevance!

  • Meety on April 28, 2013, 0:06 GMT

    Gee, as said earlier, I would want to take it easy until the swelling stops.

    Hope he is right for the Ashes.

    @landl47 on (April 27, 2013, 12:27 GMT) - I back what Mitty says about our spinners in that 10-test period you referred to. If you look back at the head to head battle between Hauritz & Swann, Hauritz at the very least equalled Swanny. His not playing any further Ashes Tests was a disgrace - would not of changed the course of the 10/11 Ashes - but COULD of been a series changer in 09 (it was that close). Since then, Lyon has proved himself to be better than Hauritz, & I think that he MIGHT surprise some English fans (the ones who think he is a non-spinner)!

  • Jayzuz on April 28, 2013, 1:37 GMT

    Swann makes a huge difference to the team. If he is under par or absent, England will be severely weakened - as we saw in NZ, where ENG were outplayed by NZ most of the tour.

    The problems with AUS batting have been well stated, but the English press have overstated the issue, & there has been a very foolish ignoring of the fact that AUS has a very good bowling attack in the making, esp. for ENG-style conditions. How a team with fast bowlers like Pattinson, Starc, Harris, Falkner & Bird could be called "the worst ever" is beyond me - dangerous hubris. Most of the bowlers are virtually allrounders, so the tail is v short. The other factor is that players like Warner, Hughes & Watson are not quite as talentless as the English presume - if any of them develop a bit of form they can be v. dangerous. It seems to me the general ENG press assessment is one of a worst case scenario for AUS, ignoring far more positive & realistic scenarios. ENG way overconfident at this point.

  • 22many on April 28, 2013, 5:52 GMT

    I am willing to suggest that NZ might just be a little harder than what many are suggesting...in fact I would go as far to say that NZ will be harder to beat than the Aussies.

  • JG2704 on April 28, 2013, 8:46 GMT

    Re the Swann vs Hauritz comms - I'd say Swann came on to his peak form in 2010/11 , but Hauritz was probably better in 2009 than Beer is now and definitely better than Doherty is now. I wonder if Eng will be confident in him playing in the CT. We're already missing our most important batsman so it will be good to have our best bowler out there