The Light Roller: England spin to win

The diary of a cricket obsessive

 

A new set of spin twins

Not that I have anything against Graeme Swann, whose resurgence as an England player in the second half of his career has been central to the team's success, but it has been nice to see James Tredwell taking centre stage in the last week. Swann has often been described as an 'old-fashioned' off-spinner, which essentially means he gives it some air and a big tweak - which I’m told was de rigueur for offies until the 1970s and 80s.  If anything, Tredwell is even more in that mould and now has a better one-day average than Swann.  If the sun continues to shine there must be a solid argument for playing both of them together later in the Champions Trophy, even at the expense of the quicks.

 

Time for Ravi to shine

‪Supremely talented players ought to succeed at the top level – but sometimes they just don’t.  As a spectator, one can feel torn between wanting to see a consistent demonstration of quality and that insistent desire to be proved right about so-and-so not quite having the right temperament, as you have been telling your friends for years (usually because you read it in the papers).  Ravi Bopara, who has now played a remarkable 85 one day games, may still become a top performer for England.  But if he doesn’t, does it necessarily matter?  County cricket provides a worthy career for many tremendous players and success for Essex ought not to sniffed at.

 

Nothing compares to Root

‪Joe Root might suffer for his ubiquitous right-handedness. Left-handers seem far more often to be compared to their glorious forebears, while right-handers are clearly too numerous to inspire the same thought process. Were Root left-handed he would perhaps be said to have the impishness and ingenuity of Neil Fairbrother, as well as touches of Goweresque grace. As it is, he may have to put up with descriptions that find the most fitting resemblance to be an anonymous schoolboy of indeterminate age.

 

Duck or burger?

‪Watching last week's final ODI against New Zealand reminded me that Trent Bridge is the loveliest of English test grounds, and has a tendency to offer something for everyone – batsmen, bowlers both fast and slow, and the happy crowd.  I experienced the joy of watching Ricky Ponting blow his top after being run-out by Gary Pratt there during England's Ashes victory in 2005. But on my first visit, during Mike Atherton's debut test in 1989,  I managed to miss my hero's first ever innings, and duck, for England (as well as Martyn Moxon’s 3-ball nought) because I was stuck in the queue for the bse-burger van.  On my return, England were 1 for 2 in reply to Australia's 602 for 6 declared...

 

Arts and Entertainment
Sir Bruce Forsyth with Tess Daly in the BBC's Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special
tvLouis Smith wins with 'Jingle Bells' quickstep on Strictly Come Dancing's Christmas Special
News
peopleIt seems you can't silence Katie Hopkins, even on Christmas Day...
Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
tvOur review of the Doctor Who Christmas Special
Arts and Entertainment
Left to right: Stanley Tucci, Sophie Grabol and Christopher Eccleston in ‘Fortitude’
tvSo Sky Atlantic arrived in Iceland to film their new and supposedly snow-bound series 'Fortitude'...
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there