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Graeme Swann career timeline

ESPNcricinfo charts Graeme Swann's career

ESPNcricinfo staff

December 22, 2013

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Graeme Swann finally got a review in his favour when he removed Mark Boucher lbw, South Africa v England, 2nd Test, Durban, December 27, 2009
Swann became a key figure in the England dressing room © Getty Images
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April 1998 - Destroyed on debut
Having impressed through the stages of age-group cricket, Graeme Swann makes his first-class debut in Northamptonshire's first Championship match of the 1998 season, against Surrey at The Oval. 24 days past his 19th birthday a young Swann keeps flighting the ball up at Ali Brown, who carts him for repeated sixes in a 73-ball century. Swann ends with the bruising figures of 1 for 91 from 13 overs.

July 1998 - Maiden first-class ton
Having chipped in with useful scores through the season, Swann has a monster performance against Leicestershire at Grace Road. He falls eight short of a hundred in the first innings, but, batting at No. 8, makes 111 in the second.

August 1999 - England calling
After a solid second season and a good finish, particularly in one-day cricket, 21-year-old Swann is called up to the England squad for the final Test of the summer. He doesn't play and England lose the match and series to New Zealand to become the worst ranked side in the world.

January 2000 - Trouble in South Africa
As a self-proclaimed 'obnoxious loud-mouth', Swann causes trouble for everyone bar the opposition as he fails to play a Test all tour against South Africa. His lengthy list of misdemeanours include sleeping through his alarm to miss the team bus and, it later emerged, being floored by a punch from a senior fast-bowling team-mate. Swann makes his ODI debut, England's first one-day game of the new millennium, at Bloemfontein. He has a tidy match but is expelled from international cricket for the rest of Duncan Fletcher's reign.

August 2002 - Flying high with Michael Hussey
Seven years before the wicket of Hussey would seal Swann's name in cricket folklore, he shared a 318-run stand with the Australian against Gloucestershire in Bristol, making 183, his highest first-class score to date.

October 2004 - Moves to Nottinghamshire
After a frustrating final season at Northamptonshire, where he averaged 20.71 with the bat and 38.93 with the ball, Swann moved to Nottinghamshire, with coach Mick Newell welcoming the chirpy approach that galled others. He moves into Kevin Pietersen's old house as his future England team-mate moved to Hampshire.

March 2005 - A-Grade in the A-Team
While England were climbing to their Ashes 2005 summit Swann was slowly rebuilding his career. The England selectors proved there was still some hope by including him in the England A tour to Sri Lanka. Though a disappointing tour for the team Swann emerged with his reputation enhanced.

September 2007 - Finally, the beginning of the road
Seven years had passed since Swann's single taste of international cricket, but England under the new regime of Peter Moores he was back in favour. Monty Panesar's star was beginning to fade and Swann's all-round ability made an attractive option. He's included on England's Test and ODI squads for Sri Lanka starts the second phase of his career in the first ODI against Sri Lanka at Dambulla. Wins man of the match for his 4 for 34 and 25 that helped England to victory in the third game at the same venue.


Graeme Swann had Sachin Tendulkar caught at slip, India v England, 3rd Test, Kolkata, 4th day, December 8, 2012
Swann was instrumental in helping England to their first series win in India for a quarter of a century © BCCI
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December 2009 - Double on debut
Makes his Test debut against India at Chennai. In his first over he claims the key wickets of Gautam Gambhir and Rahul Dravid and sets a trend that continues for striking in the first over of a spell.

February 2009 - England's No.1
Having started the winter as Monty Panesar's understudy, Swann replaces him as the sole spinner in the side for the Test against West Indies at St John's. He celebrates by taking eight wickets in the match including his maiden five-wicket haul - 5 for 57 in the first innings.

September 2009 - Ashes winner
Having started slowly at Cardiff, Swann grew in confidence playing breezy, often momentum-arresting innings with the bat through the series and taking crucial fourth-innings wickets in the win at Lord's. In the third Test at Edgbaston he produced one of the most compelling passages of play in the series, testing and teasing Ricky Ponting for five balls, before castling him with Swann's own 'ball of the century'. In the final Test at The Oval Swann was in the wickets again, taking four in the second innings including the final, Ashes-winning scalp of Michael Hussey.

January 2010 - Soaring in South Africa
South Africa should never have been the venue for a finger-spinner to cement his place near the pinnacle of the game. Yet Graeme Swann's stellar performances, with bat and particular ball gifted England a series draw which they should never have earned and propelled Swann to No.3 in the world's bowling rankings. Man of the match in the first two Tests, his first innings five-wicket haul at Centurion and nine wickets to win England the Test at Durban, were pivotal in holding together an erratic four-man attack. He completed his first full year in Test cricket with 54 wickets from 11 games, second only to Mitchell Johnson in 2009.

December 2010 - Adelaide owned
On the truest Test wicket in Australia, England knew they needed a performance from Swann if they were to wrap up victory in the second Test, especially given that Stuart Broad had been ruled out of the rest of the game with a torn stomach muscle. He duly delivered with five second-innings wickets.

August 2011 - World No. 1
England humiliated India at home and their premier spinner proved too great a task even for the men from the subcontinent. Swann took nine wickets as England won at Lord's and then returned at the end of the series to pick up six wickets in the second innings of the final Test at The Oval as England polished off a 4-0 whitewash.

December 2012 - Conquoring the final frontier
No-one thought it was possible, England out-spinning India in India but Swann and Monty Panesar combined to deliver a famous victory. Their finest hour came in Mumbai as eight wickets for Swann and 11 for Panesar returned the best figures by England spinners since 1958. The performance not only levelled the series but gave England belief and they went on to win the series 2-1 - their first triumph in India for a quarter of a century.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by   on (December 23, 2013, 0:26 GMT)

He was a great spinner ever. I think England takes more time to fill his spot. He is my favorite off spin bowler. Wish him all the best with the retirement.

Posted by Ozcricketwriter on (December 22, 2013, 16:59 GMT)

He retired while still in good form. One bad series, or half a series really, and that's enough for him. Far too early to retire, especially as 2 very good spinning wickets were to come in the rest of the series. The guy was only 34.

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