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#1 mongo_jones

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 04:46 PM

missed a great test between india and sri lanka. the first in the 3 game series was washed out. in the second, muralitharan caused havoc on a spinning pitch, but not before sachin tendulkar broke gavaskar's record with his 35th test century. then kumble bundled out the sri lankans in their first innings. by their second innings the indians had figured murali out and set sri lanka a target of 400 with a day and a half to go. they then bowled them out, kumble taking 10 wickets in the match.

most indians believe muralitharan is a far better spinner than warne. at least, indian batsmen have been unable to smack him around consistently the way they have with warne. tendulkar, in particular, has savaged warne to the extent that warne claimed he had nightmares about him.

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#2 Wilfrid1

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 04:48 PM

Happens to the best bowlers. Derek Underwood was Gary Sobers' and Clive Lloyd's "beeyotch". Is that how you spell it?
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#3 mongo_jones

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 04:52 PM

here's an evocative description of murali vs. the indian bats in the second innings:

caught a bit of the fourth day action as well. it was great to see how the indian batsmen had figured out murali and bested him. for one thing the pitch slowed down quite a bit. for another, i think they may have done some video analysis of murali's bowling and come up with a good game plan. it was like watching a cat and mouse game. most of them, particularly dravid, pathan and yuvi seemed to reach to the pitch of the delivery so it wouldn't matter whether it was an offbreak or the doosra. even with his height, dravid had to do quite a bit of stretching and once almost lost his footing. whenever the batsmen reached out, murali just kept cutting back on the length more and more and finally it would be too short giving the batsmen sufficient room and time to play him off the backfoot (cut/pull etc.). he still troubled them plenty and was unfortunate to only get one wicket. yuvi in particualr still looked distinctly uncomfortable against murali on many occasions but whenever he was beaten, he just accepted it and went on with the next ball unaffected.

only SCG was trying to read murali off the pitch and was doing quite well initially because the pitch had slowed down but in the end he fell to murali's deception in the air. the delivery with which murali foxed him was peachy! just on the prior delivery he had bowled a doosra but pulled it a bit short. SCG had misread it but had enough time to readjust his position to play for the offbreak (to the left hander) instead of the legbreak he had expected. the very next ball, also a doosra, he gave it a lot more air and landed it right in the gate. it just ricocheted off the pitch through his gate like a rocket and rearranged his furniture. a beauty! but that's pretty much all he got for his toil. later dhoni joined yuvi and caned him to give india a solid 400 lead.


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#4 Adam Lawrence

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 04:53 PM

Most Indians are wrong. I am not among the 'Murali chucks every delivery and so his records should be expunged' brigade, but his doosra is blatant. I do enjoy watching him, but the pleasure is tempered by knowing that a horse and cart has been driven through the Laws of Cricket to accommodate him.
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#5 mongo_jones

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 04:55 PM

yo, don't be hating on murali just because the brits can't play warne.

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#6 alexhills

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 05:22 PM

yo, don't be hating on murali just because the brits can't play warne.

We've had our troubles with Murali too... Not to mention Danesh Kaneria in the last 3 matches. Kumble must be looking forward to March. I guess its the new-fangled non-turning wickets that people play on in the County Championship, but Murali and Warne cause havoc when they play in that too. Seriously though, who is the last English spinner to turn the ball properly? - Tufnell if he wasn't so fragile I guess - but we've had no one seriously good since Underwood really.... aargh.

Its been a good time for spinners in general over the last decade or so though, not so long ago Gibbs was the only one to have taken 300 wickets, now there are 2 at the top of the tree.
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#7 mongo_jones

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 05:29 PM

i don't know about the legality of murali's action, since i haven't seen much of him. but after i got out of needling adam mode i actually went and looked up warne's numbers. quite revealing:

his overall test bowling average (against all countries) is 24.97. against india it jumps to 47.18. more shockingly, his average is worse against india in australia where it is a whopping 62.55.

india's pitches are tailored for spinners. granted the indian team may be the best players of spin but surely he should have more success against them.

murali's average is also higher against india than anyone else but by less. his overall average is lower than warne's at 22.33, and his average against india is 32.09.

(all this, courtesy cricinfo's wonderful statsguru)

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#8 mongo_jones

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 05:36 PM

and the same is true of warne's strike rate, which falls (rises?) sharply against india.



statsguru comparison of warne and murali

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#9 Wilfrid1

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 05:38 PM

But you must interpret the statistics. Warne's stats at home against India are grossly distorted by the bowling avergae of 228.00 from the two matches he played against them in 1990/1, his first ever series.
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#10 mongo_jones

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 05:45 PM

But you must interpret the statistics.  Warne's stats at home against India are grossly distorted by the bowling avergae of 228.00 from the two matches he played against them in 1990/1, his first ever series.

yes, but even without that his average is much higher against india. in 1998 and 2001, especially. and keep in mind that his overall average in 1991/92 (you're off by a year) was 41.91.

your boy underwood fares much better--with only his last series against india letting him down.

edit: if you filter out his horrendous first series against india his overall average against them drops only to 42.88.

he seems to have had another horrible series in the west indies in 1998. lara was in full cry then.

Edited by mongo_jones, 14 December 2005 - 05:58 PM.

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#11 Wilfrid1

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 06:35 PM

It's just the nature of the data. Looking at his whole career, the 228.00 average from the first series has little impact, but if you look at his career against India in Australia, there's only that series and another one. Gives it too much weight.

I agree his overall average against India is poor, but that 62 figure is unrepresentative.
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#12 mongo_jones

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 06:40 PM

It's just the nature of the data.  Looking at his whole career, the 228.00 average from the first series has little impact, but if you look at his career against India in Australia, there's only that series and another one.  Gives it too much weight.

I agree his overall average against India is poor, but that 62 figure is unrepresentative.

true.

i was impressed by underwood's numbers. you have to understand my memory of him is from that 81-82 series when he looked no more threatening than our own dilip doshi. i assumed that a lot of his numbers must have come between 1965 and 71--before gavaskar came on the scene, but no, he didn't play india till 1971.

i haven't run the numbers but i'm guessing a lot of top bowlers were savaged by sobers, lloyd, kanhai etc.

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#13 Wilfrid1

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 06:43 PM

I'm sure that's true. It was just that Underwood, against most batsmen, was very hard to get away, even when he wasn't threatening to take wickets. I remember Lloyd (and more dimly Sobers) had the rare ability to slog him around like an ordinary spinner. Being left-handed was a big help, of course.
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#14 Wilfrid1

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 06:49 PM

I hadn't followed the Muralitharan controversy closely, but there's an interesting review here.

I looked at some pictures of him bowling. His arm is clearly very crooked indeed - but the issue, of course, is whether he straightens it before releasing the ball. No rule against bowling with a crooked arm, as long as it stays crooked.
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#15 mongo_jones

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Posted 14 December 2005 - 06:58 PM

my arm physically hurts when i see murali bowl*.

but this stats stuff is fun.

here's bedi: numbers ruined by his one series against pakistan in the twilight of his career. pretty good first series against the terrible windies, but he was lucky to get them in india.

and here's chandra. he had a tough time in australia in 67/68. was greg chappell already on the scene?

pakistan smashed the hell out of every indian spinner in 78/79. of the regular bowlers chandra had the best numbers, taking 8 wickets at 48 apiece. javed miandad averaged 119 in 3 tests. you think that's good? the great zaheer abbas averaged 194! sweet mother of mercy. mushtaq averaged 75, and imran a tidy 50.

but now i must clean myself and actually leave the house for the day.

*as opposed to the emotional pain it used to suffer watching mudassar nazar (the least elegant medium-fast bowler of all time). on the whole, that's a fairly balanced account for a site with the url muralitharan.com

Edited by mongo_jones, 14 December 2005 - 07:03 PM.

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