Friday, December 31, 2010

Dale Steyn Playing Style and His Historical Career Status

Dale Steyn Is A South African Cricket Player Currently Ranked No.1 Test Bowler In The World-

South African paceman Dale Steyn is to be investigated by match referee Jeff Crowe for allegedly spitting in the direction of West Indies spinner Sulieman Benn during the third and final test.
The alleged incident took place as Steyn walked off after he had been dismissed in the morning session on Monday.

South Africa completed a seven-wicket victory on day four on Tuesday and clinched the series 2-0.
"We've had a discussion with the on-field umpires and the match referee and they will take this matter up to the next level if they have to," West Indies captain Chris Gayle told reporters.

Tempers also flared on Tuesday when umpires Simon Taufel and Steve Davis had to intervene to keep the peace after West Indies fast bowler Kemar Roach struck Graeme Smith and Jacques Kallis on the helmet.

Gayle said the series had been played in good spirit before the final test.

"It was brilliant leading up to this test match but things got out of hand. The series has been a wonderful one, it's just unfortunate that at the end we had a bit of a boil up, Gayle said.

South African bowlers rip through India
Dale Steyn of South Africa celebrates after dismissing Sachin Tendulkar. Dale Steyn of South Africa celebrates after dismissing Sachin Tendulkar. Photo: Reuters

CENTURION: South Africa's fast bowlers made up for lost time as they ripped through the Indian batting line-up on a rain-shortened first day of the first Test at SuperSport Park overnight.
Morne Morkel took four wickets and Dale Steyn three as India crashed to 9-136 after being sent in on a green, damp pitch.

Morkel, who took four for 20 and bowled with consistent hostility, said it was a disciplined performance by the bowlers.
"We were under pressure after winning the toss and sending them in to bat. We needed to execute well. A lot of times when the ball is nipping around you can get carried away but today we kept calm, kept cool and did the basics right," he said.

Steyn, whose three wickets cost 34 runs, backed up his new ball partner's comments.
"All the wickets today were with good bowling and keeping the ball up to the bat," he said. "It was good planning."

Only Sachin Tendulkar, who made an elegant 36 off 34 balls, looked at ease as Steyn and Morkel confirmed their credentials as the world's most lethal new ball pair as they scythed through the side ranked number one in Test cricket.

Steyn started the slide early when he had Virender Sehwag caught at third man for nought. He followed up with two superb, full, late-swinging deliveries to get rid of VVS Laxman and Tendulkar after the pair had mounted a mini-recovery after India had slumped to 3-27.

Laxman and Tendulkar put on 39 before Laxman and Tendulkar fell in successive overs from Steyn, sandwiched by the wicket of Suresh Raini, who lasted only three balls before edging Jacques Kallis to third slip.

The tall Morkel claimed the wickets of Gautam Gambhir and Rahul Dravid in successive overs. He also dismissed tailenders Ishant Sharma and Sree Sreesanth before bad light ended play. Dravid was his 100th victim in his 29th Test.

Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, hitting out as he batted with the tail, finished the day on 33 not out.

The only other batsman to reach 20 was Harbhajan Singh, who followed his two centuries against New Zealand recently with another hard-hitting innings of unusual strokes, making 27 off 25 balls before he was out in a manner as unorthodox as his batting.

After Dhoni hit the ball to deep cover, wicketkeeper Mark Boucher collected a throw from Alviro Petersen and flicked it between his own legs to run out Harbhajan by a few centimetres.
Harbhajan said the toss was the most crucial factor of the day.

"It's always tough to lose the toss on this sort of wicket," he said.
"Some balls were stopping and some were going through."
Harbhajan said India remained confident.

"As a team we like to be challenged," he said. "Now we will look to bowl well and stop them getting too far away from us."

Morkel, though, backed South Africa to gain a worthwhile lead when they get to bat.
"I can't see us not getting the runs on the board," he said.

Heavy rain overnight and during the morning delayed the start by four and a half hours and South African captain Graeme Smith had no hesitation about sending India in. Dhoni said he too would have chosen to bowl first.

Dale Steyn
Dale Steyn 3.jpg
Personal information
Full name Dale Willem Steyn
Born 27 June 1983 (age 27)(1983-06-27)
Phalaborwa, Transvaal Province, South Africa
Height 1.81 m (5 ft 11 in)
Batting style Right-handed
Bowling style Right-arm fast
Role Bowler
International information
National side South Africa
Test debut (cap 297) 17 December 2004 v England
Last Test 29 June 2010 v West Indies
ODI debut (cap 82) 17 August 2005 v Asia XI
Last ODI 28 May 2010 v West Indies
ODI shirt no. 8
Domestic team information
Years Team
2003-2004 Northerns
2004-present Titans (squad no. 8)
2005 Essex
2007 Warwickshire
2007-present Royal Challengers Bangalore (squad no. 2)
Career statistics
Competition Test ODI FC LA
Matches 45 43 86 87
Runs scored 588 86 1,092 132
Batting average 13.67 9.55 14.18 7.76
100s/50s 0/1 0/0 0/3 0/0
Top score 76 35 82 35
Balls bowled 9,221 2,120 16,671 4,180
Wickets 232 61 386 130
Bowling average 23.31 31.21 24.35 25.93
5 wickets in innings 15 0 23 2
10 wickets in match 4 n/a 6 n/a
Best bowling 7/51 4/16 8/41 5/20
Catches/stumpings 13/– 7/– 19/– 13/–
Source: cricinfo, 30 December 2010

Dale Willem Steyn (pronounced /ˈsteɪn/) (born 27 June 1983 in Phalaborwa, Transvaal Province, South Africa) is a South African cricketer who plays in Test and One Day International cricket for South Africa. He is currently the number one ranked Test bowler in the world . Steyn plays domestic cricket in South Africa for Cape Cobras.

He is a right-arm fast bowler, and bowls at speeds of around 145–150 km/h (his fastest being recorded at 156.2 km/h during the 2010 IPL, Bangalore Royal Challengers against Kolkata Knight Riders). 

Steyn holds the record for the fastest South African to reach 100 wickets in Test Match cricket, a feat he achieved on 2 March 2008. Steyn currently has the third best bowling strike rate of all time in Test match cricket (amongst bowlers who have bowled a minimum of 2500 deliveries), behind George Lohmann and Shane Bond. 

He achieved a tally of 78 wickets at the world class average of 16.24 in Season 2007/08 and was subsequently rewarded with the prestigious ICC 2008 Test Cricketer of the Year Award. He is also the victim of Rahul Dravid's 200th catch.

Domestic career-

Steyn made his first-class debut for Northerns (subsequently merged with Easterns to form the Titans) on 17 October 2003. He only played two first-class games and made little impact in his first season, but a series of strong performances in the initial part of the 2004/2005 season saw him called up to the Test squad to play England. He went back to playing for the Titans after failing to impress in his first three Tests.

Steyn went to England in 2005 to play for Essex, appearing in seven matches between May and June. He failed to make a big impact in his initial outing in County Championship cricket, taking 14 wickets at 59.85. On his return to domestic cricket in South Africa, Steyn bowled excellently for the Titans through the 2005/2006 season which earned him a recall to the Test squad to face New Zealand.

Steyn seized the opportunity to cement his place in the South Africa Test team, and as a result of becoming a regular selection for the national team, he has subsequently played little domestic cricket in South Africa during the last two seasons, appearing for the Titans in just three SuperSport Series matches.

He had a second stint in England, playing for Warwickshire in the first half of the 2007 English season. This time around he had more success, claiming 23 County Championship wickets in seven matches at an average of 25.86. He also played well in the Friends Provident Trophy, a 50-over tournament, finishing as the leading wicket-taker for Warwickshire. He has since become a regular in the South African One Day International team.

Steyn signed to play in the Indian Premier League in 2008, playing for the Royal Challengers Bangalore. He earned US$325,000 for his appearance in the tournament.

 Playing style-

Steyn is an aggressive out-and-out fast bowler capable of bowling at speeds in excess of 150 km/h. He is capable of generating considerable swing and is usually chosen to bowl with the new ball to maximise these attributes. He has also demonstrated the ability to reverse swing the older ball in a Test match against India in Nagpur in 2010, which South Africa won by an innings and six runs. Steyn is an extremely competitive cricketer and often celebrates vigorously after taking a wicket. He has stated that "(he) love(s) the buzz from bowling fast" and that "(he) want(s) to be the quickest in the world".

Steyn is usually considered a tail-ender when batting and often bats at number ten or eleven. However, he is a capable hitter of the ball and can also occupy the crease if required.

International career-

Dale Steyn in the field at the SCG in January 2009

 Home Tests against England 2004/05-

Steyn made his debut for South Africa on 17 December 2004 in the first Test of England's tour. His first victim in Test cricket was Marcus Trescothick whom he bowled with a fast in-swinging delivery. However, his overall performance was underwhelming, he took eight wickets at an average of 52.00 and he was dropped after bowling poorly in England's second innings of the fourth Test in January 2005, bowling eight no balls in nine overs which went for 47 runs. England won the match by 77 runs.

Achievements and Records-

 Test Five-wicket innings-

Test Five-wicket innings
Number Figures Match Against City/Country Venue Season
1 5/47 4 New Zealand Centurion, South Africa SuperSport Park 2005/06
2 5/82 8 Sri Lanka Colombo, Sri Lanka P Saravanamuttu Stadium 2006
3 5/56 12 Pakistan Karachi, Pakistan National Stadium 2006/07
4 5/34 14 New Zealand Johannesburg, South Africa New Wanderers Stadium 2007/08
5 5/59 14 New Zealand Johannesburg, South Africa New Wanderers Stadium 2007/08
6 6/49 15 New Zealand Centurion, South Africa SuperSport Park 2007/08
7 6/72 18 West Indies Durban, South Africa Kingsmead 2007/08
8 5/23 22 India Ahmedabad, India Ahmedabad 2007/08
9 5/63 25 Bangladesh Bloemfontein, South Africa OUTsurance Oval 2008/09
10 5/87 28 Australia Melbourne, Australia Melbourne Cricket Ground 2008/09
11 5/67 28 Australia Melbourne, Australia Melbourne Cricket Ground 2008/09
12 5/51 35 England Johannesburg, South Africa New Wanderers Stadium 2009/10
13 7/51 37 India Nagpur, India Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium 2009/10
14 5/29 38 West Indies Port of Spain, West Indies Queen's Park Oval 2010
15 6/50 45 India Durban, South Africa Kingsmead 2010/11


 Test Ten-wicket Matches-

Test Ten-wicket Matches
Number Match Figures Match Against City/Country Venue Season
1 10/93 14 New Zealand Johannesburg, South Africa New Wanderers Stadium 2007/08
2 10/91 15 New Zealand Centurion, South Africa SuperSport Park 2007/08
3 10/154 28 Australia Melbourne, Australia Melbourne Cricket Ground 2008/09
4 10/108 37 India Nagpur, India Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium 2009/10

Steyn took his 200th Test wicket against the West Indies in the first Test of the three match series, that 200th wicket came from just 39 Test matches. Dale Steyn is the fourth fastest bowler to get to 200 Test wickets, only CV Grimmett (Aus) 36, DK Lillee (Aus) 38 and Waqar Younis (Pak) 38 have reached the 200 Test wicket mile stone quicker than Dale Steyn.

It’s the above statistic that got me reading and looking up Steyn’s statistics, here’s what I found:
Steyn’s strike rate has been consistent since the start of his Test career in December 2004, his 100th wicket came in his 21st test match.

He’s taken 10 wickets in a match on four occasions, he took 10 wickets back to back against New Zealand in 2007. Steyn has taken 5 wickets on fourteen occasions. To put these statistics in perspective, Shaun Pollock who holds the record for the number of Test wickets by a South African (421) has taken 5 wickets on sixteen occasions and 10 wickets just once .

Bowling partners-

The recent success that Morne Morkel has enjoyed should have a positive impact on Dale Steyn, all of the great fast bowlers in the world have had a successful bowling partner. Donald had Pollock, Pollock had Ntini and now Steyn has Morkel.

As South Africans we should enjoy watching the number 1 Test bowler in the world hitting his finest form and celebrate his success.


One Day Internationals 2005/06-

Later that year, Steyn was picked in the squad for the African XI in the Afro-Asia Cup of 2005/06, and he made his One Day International debut on 17 August 2005. The African XI won the match, with Steyn bowling last batsman Ashish Nehra to seal victory by two runs. 

Steyn made his One Day International debut for South Africa on 20 January 2006 in a match against Australia at Melbourne, a match which was part of the 2005-06 VB Series. Steyn did not bowl particularly well and after another below par performance against Sri Lanka he dropped out of consideration for the South African ODI team.

 Home Tests against New Zealand 2005/2006-

Following a strong season playing domestic cricket for the Titans, Steyn was recalled to the Test side to play New Zealand in April 2006. He responded to his opportunity with his first five-wicket haul in the first Test at Centurion, ripping through the New Zealand batting lineup along with Makhaya Ntini as New Zealand crumbled to 120 all out, chasing 248 to win. He finished the three Test series with 16 wickets at 26.00 and made a fine impression throughout.

 Away Tests against Sri Lanka 2006-

Steyn was included in the Test team to play Sri Lanka away in a two match series in July and August 2006. In his first overseas Test, at the Sinhalese Sports Club Ground, Colombo, he took 3 for 129 as Sri Lanka piled up 756-5, with Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene putting together the highest Test match partnership ever (624 runs). South Africa slumped to defeat by an innings and 153 runs. In the second Test, at the Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu Stadium, Colombo, Steyn took his second five-wicket haul in Tests during Sri Lanka's first innings, but went wicketless in their seconds innings as Sri Lanka sealed a 2-0 series victory by a single wicket. Steyn finished the series with eight wickets at an average of 36.50.

 Home Tests against India 2006/07-

Steyn retained his Test place for the three match home series against India. He picked up an injury whilst bowling early in India's first innings in the first Test at Johannesburg which prevented him from taking much further part in the game and also ruled him out of the second Test. He returned to play in the deciding third Test at Cape Town and bowled well, taking six wickets for 88 runs in the match as South Africa clinched the match and the series. He finished the series with six wickets at an average of 19.00.

 Home Tests against Pakistan 2006/07-

Despite his strong performance on his return to the team in the third Test against India, Steyn missed out on a place in the first two Tests against Pakistan, with the selectors opting to play a four man attack featuring full-time spinner Paul Harris. He returned in the third Test, at Cape Town, when the selectors decided to rest Andre Nel and Shaun Pollock in preparation for the imminent 2007 Cricket World Cup. He took four wickets in the match for 87 runs as South Africa won the match by 5 wickets and took the series 2-1. As this was his only match, his average for the series was 21.75.

Away Tests against Australia 2008/2009-

Steyn fields a ball at practice, Adelaide Oval, January 2009.
In the 2nd Test match in a 3 match series, Steyn was involved in a record 9th wicket partnership of 180 with J.P. Duminy. Steyn recorded a score of 76 (191 deliveries) in an innings that helped South Africa recover from 6-141 to post a score of 459. Steyn also starred in the first innings with figures of 5-87 (29.0 overs). In the second innings Steyn returned figures of 5-67 (20.2 overs) and helped South Africa to restrict the Australians to 247 giving the hosts a lead of 183. Steyn now has match figures of 10-154. This is the third time that he has taken 10 wickets in a match in his test career. South Africa duly completed the chase with nine wickets in hand, giving them a 2–0 series lead and their first ever Test series win in Australia.

It was also Australia's first home series defeat in 16 years. Steyn was named man of the match for this performance. Steyn made a rearguard effort in attempting to prevent an Australian victory in the 3rd Test in Sydney frustrating the hosts with 28 runs in 65 balls in a 50 run partnership from 105 balls with Makhaya Ntini in order to try to secure the draw. However, when he was out with 50 balls to go, injured captain Graeme Smith came in with a broken hand in an attempt to hold out. Smith was eventually bowled out by Mitchell Johnson with ten balls to go.

 Away Tests Against West Indies 2010-

In the first test against the Windies in the 2010 series, South Africa convincingly beat them, with Steyn take his 200th wicket, Sulimenn Benn, clean bowled (off stump). This was also the wicket that brought Steyn his 14th five - for, a superb achievement considering Steyn's modest record of only 38 tests.

Test Man-of-the-Match Awards:

Test Man-of-the-Match Awards
Number Match Bowling Figures Match Batting Figures Match Against City/Country Venue Season
1 5/34 and 5/59 13 and did not bat 14 New Zealand Johannesburg, South Africa New Wanderers Stadium 2007/08
2 4/42 and 6/49 25 and did not bat 15 New Zealand Centurion, South Africa SuperSport Park 2007/08
3 5/87 and 5/67 76 and did not bat 28 Australia Melbourne, Aus Melbourne Cricket Ground 2008/0

 Test Man-of-the-Series Awards-

Test Man-of-the-Series Awards
Number Matches Series Wickets and Bowling Average Series Runs and Batting Average Against Country Season
1 2 20 wickets at 9.20 38 runs at 19.00 New Zealand South Africa 2007/08
2 3 20 wickets at 19.10 59 runs at 29.50 West Indies South Africa 2007/08
3 2 14 wickets at 12.57 7 runs at 7.00 Bangladesh Bangladesh 2007/08


 Career Best Performances-

Batting Bowling

Score Fixture Venue Season Score Fixture Venue Season
Tests 76 South Africa v Australia MCG 2008 7-51 South Africa v India Nagpur 2010
ODI 35 South Africa v India Jaipur 2010 4-16 South Africa v Bangladesh Potchefstroom 2008
T20I 5 South Africa v England Bridgetown 2010 4-9 South Africa v West Indies Port Elizabeth 2007
FC 82 Essex v Durham Riverside 2005 8-41 Titans v Eagles Bloemfontein 2007
LA 35 South Africa v India Jaipur 2010 5-20 South Africa A v Sri Lanka A Colombo (RPS) 2005
T20 22 Titans v Lions Centurion 2010 4-9 South Africa v West Indies Port Elizabeth 2007
Dale Steyn-
Dale Steyn is currently the number one ranked Test bowler in the world cricket Player. He is Protea's (fast bowler), South African Cricket Club. Test Debut: v England at Port Elizabeth - 17-21 December 2004. ODI Debut: Africa XI v Asia XI at Centurion - 17 August 2005. Won four awards at the Mutual and Federal SA Cricket Awards in June 2008. He has been nominated for the CSA Test Cricketer of the Year; SA Cricketer of the Year "2010 SA Cricket Awards Gala".

Steyn showed what makes him such a big threat. He had the opportunity of bowling in very helpful conditions at both venues but he never tried to overachieve, never got overexcited. He assessed the conditions coolly and bowled just the right line and length to snare his victims.

The first day of the Durban Test was the perfect example – the wicket was green and the sky was overcast, an ideal setting for a fast man. Morne Morkel, now No. 3 in the bowler rankings, kept bowling short and wide and hardly troubled the batsmen. Steyn, on the other hand, bowled full and on and around the off-stump. He did not waste his energy on bowling bouncers. The result was some unplayable deliveries which accounted for batsmen like Sehwag and Dravid. Steyn finished with 6/50 off 19 incisive overs to grab the initiative for South Africa, yet again.

Indian batsmen will be the first to vouch for Steyn's class as they have often been on the receiving end of his prowess. During the Ahmedabad Test in 2008, Steyn claimed 5/23 as India were bowled out for 76 in just two hours in the first innings. South Africa won the Test easily. In Nagpur, earlier this year, Steyn (7/51) made the old ball talk as India slumped to 233 all out from 192/3. South Africa ran out winners here too. At Centurion too, Steyn got the crucial breaks on the third and fourth evenings to hasten India's slide.

The Durban Test is Steyn's ninth against India and he already has 45 wickets at a measly 18.42 per wicket after the end of the first innings. Overall, his tally is 230 scalps in his 45th Test, the average being a very impressive 23.25. Simply put, Steyn picks up a wicket every 40th ball!

It is instructive to hear Steyn talk about his bowling. He comes across as a serious student of the game who is humble about his skills and achievements. Asked if he was frustrated when it took him some time to take a wicket on Day One at Durban, Steyn said, "Patience is the key. If you bowl in the right areas, something is going to give." His bowling bears him out.

Steyn's stock delivery, the outswinger, is one of the most feared in world cricket. It fetches him a majority of his wickets. How can he get the ball to shoot away so much from the middle or the leg stump? "I suppose I'm lucky that I can get the ball to do that. But I don't try it all the time, you can do it on certain days. Today (Sunday) was such a day. But if it doesn't work than you get hit through mid-wicket for a boundary every single time," was Steyn's self-effacing, honest take. He brought in some perspective too. "You don't want to be a hero every ball. You do what your captain wants you to do." Steyn, though, admits that the temptation to bowl a ripper gets the better of him once in a while. "Every now and then, I get a bit cheeky and I bowl one of those deliveries. If they don't come off and I'm hit for a four then my captain pulls me up."

Steyn places great emphasis on cricket being a team game. "I've played with some great guys like Kallis, Shaun Pollock, Makhaya (Ntini). I listened to them and it helped me improve my game. Cricket is a team sport and if you can listen to the guys who have been around for 100 Tests or more, it's going to make a difference in your career."

From Wikipedia-

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Graeme Swann Bowling Style and His Glorious Achievement

Graeme Swann Is An Ashes Glory Boys and His Great Contribution For Team-

Graeme Swann
Graham Swann.jpg
Personal information
Full name Graeme Peter Swann
Born 24 March 1979 (age 31)(1979-03-24)
Northampton, Northamptonshire, England
Nickname Chin, Swanny, Swannatron
Height 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Batting style Right-hand batsman
Bowling style Right-arm off break
Role Spin bowler
Relations Raymond Swann (father), Alec Swann (brother)
International information
National side England
Test debut (cap 641) 11 December 2008 v India
Last Test 19 December 2010 v Australia
ODI debut (cap 157) 23 January 2000 v South Africa
Last ODI 22 September 2010 v Pakistan
ODI shirt no. 66 (previously 24)
Domestic team information
Years Team
2005–present Nottinghamshire (squad no. 6)
1998–2004 Northamptonshire
Career statistics
Competition Test ODI FC LA
Matches 27 43 205 230
Runs scored 683 295 6,832 2,945
Batting average 23.55 12.82 26.48 19.00
100s/50s –/4 –/– 4/35 –/14
Top score 85 34 183 83
Balls bowled 6,993 1,902 36,639 9,132
Wickets 124 59 573 259
Bowling average 27.62 24.33 31.87 25.94
5 wickets in innings 10 1 25 3
10 wickets in match 1 4
Best bowling 6/65 5/28 7/33 5/17
Catches/stumpings 24/– 19/– 154/– 78/–
Source: Cricinfo, 28 December 2010

Graeme Peter Swann (born 24 March 1979 in Northampton) is an English international cricketer. He is primarily a right-arm offspinner, but also bats right-handed. After initially playing for his home county Northamptonshire, for whom he made his debut in 1997, he moved to Nottinghamshire in 2005. He often fields at slip. He attended Sponne School in Towcester, Northamptonshire.

Swann played a single One Day International against South Africa in 2000, before losing his place in the squad. In 2007, Swann was chosen to accompany England on its tour of Sri Lanka as the team's second spin bowler, alongside Monty Panesar, and subsequently cemented a regular place in England's Test team, playing throughout England's 2–1 victory in the 2009 Ashes. In December 2009, he became the first English spinner to take 50 wickets in a calendar year, culminating in back-to-back man of the match awards in the first two Tests of the South Africa tour and third place in the world rankings for bowlers.

In March 2010, Swann became the first English off-spinner since Jim Laker to take 10 wickets in a match, when he achieved the feat in England's victory in the first test in Bangladesh. In May, he was named ECB Cricketer of the Year.

Test debut-

Following a loss of form to Monty Panesar, alongside whom Swann had played for Northamptonshire, Swann made his Test debut against India in December 2008, and made an immediate impact, dismissing Gautam Gambhir with his third delivery and Rahul Dravid with his sixth, both lbw, thus becoming only the second player in Test history after Richard Johnson (also for England) to take two wickets in his first Test over.

In the Third Test in the West Indies in 2009, he was brought back into the Test fold following the poor form of Panesar, and in this match collected his first five-wicket haul in a Test, 5 for 57 in the West Indies' first innings, including two wickets in two balls. This was the second-best performance ever by any spinner in Antigua. Swann also collected five wickets in the first of the West Indian innings in the Fourth Test.

In addition to a score of 63 not out batting at 9, he took six more wickets in the first home Test of 2009, again against the West Indies, at Lord's. This included three for sixteen in five overs in the first innings, removing Devon Smith, Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Brendon Nash.

At the end of the one-day series against the same opposition, the England players were permitted to rejoin their counties in the build-up to the 2009 ICC World Twenty20 tournament. The transition, Swann wrote, was a comfortable one: with less media scrutiny and a relatively uncongested agenda, as well as the lower intensity of the cricket, he had himself some "great fun".
Swann gave a good account of himself in the World Twenty20, bowling tidily for his five wickets "while showing the passion for playing for his country that," according to journalist Nick Hoult, "endears him to England supporters."


The Ashes (2009)-

Swann had done enough in the year preceding the 2009 Ashes to be considered England's premier spinner, overtaking Panesar. The pertinent question was not whether Swann would play, but which of Panesar and Adil Rashid, the other two spinners in the England squad, would play with him. He went on to play in all five matches of the series. Panesar was selected for the first Test, but his bowling did not impress and he was dropped for the remainder of the series, leaving Swann as England's only slow bowler.

In the first Test at Sophia Gardens, Swann hit a first-innings 47 not out from 40 balls. His bowling was anodyne, failing to pick up a wicket in 38 overs in Australia's only innings, in which they amassed 674 for 6 declared with four centurions, but his second-innings 31 helped England salvage a draw, as Australia were unable to take the final English wicket with Panesar and James Anderson at the crease.

At Lord's, Swann was part of England's first-innings slide from 302 for 3 (Andrew Strauss 161) to 425 all out, and was only required to bowl one over in Australia's first innings, as England's seamers combined to bowl Australia out for 215. However, in Australia's second innings, after Michael Clarke and Brad Haddin had briefly made a mammoth 522-run target seem attainable, Swann combined with Andrew Flintoff (5 for 92) to bowl Australia out, taking the key wicket of Michael Clarke bowled for 136. Swann took the final wicket of Mitchell Johnson, bowled for 63, to finish with second-innings figures of 4 for 87 and complete England's first victory against Australia at Lord's since 1934.

At Edgbaston, Swann was only required to bowl two first-innings overs, but nonethess made England's first breakthrough, trapping Simon Katich lbw to end an 85-run opening partnership. With the bat he contributed 24 from 20 balls as England's lower-middle order powered the side to a 113-run first-innings lead, and with England pursuing victory he clean bowled Ricky Ponting with a sharply turning offbreak, but on the final day his bowling was anodyne, failing to take another wicket as Australia drew the match with ease, losing only three wickets on the final day.

At Headingley Swann made a duck in England's first-innings collapse to 102 all out, and failed to take a wicket in Australia's total of 445. In the second innings he hit a defiant 62 but could not stave off an innings defeat.

England therefore progressed to the Oval with the series level at 1–1 and with a victory required to regain the Ashes. Swann took 4 for 38, combining with Stuart Broad (5 for 37) to bowl Australia out for 160. He hit a 55-ball 63 in England's second innings, sharing a 13-over partnership of 90 with debutant Jonathan Trott (119).

On the final day of the series Swann made England's first breakthrough in the fourth over of the day, trapping Simon Katich lbw. He claimed figures of 4 for 120, taking his tally of wickets to eight in the match, including the final wicket, Mike Hussey caught at short leg by Alastair Cook for 121, to clinch the Ashes series. He finished the series with an aggregate of 249 runs (fourth in England's list) at an average of 35.57, and 14 wickets (second among England's bowlers only to Stuart Broad).

In the 7th ODI in England's one-day series against Australia Swann took 5 for 28, helping dismiss Australia for 176. This was Swann's first five wicket haul in ODIs. England won the match by 4 wickets, with Swann named man of the match.


Early years-

Swann bowling for Nottinghamshire against Leicestershire in 2007
Swann began his domestic career for Northamptonshire. Against Leicestershire in 1998 he scored 92 and 111, his maiden first-class half-century and century. Touring South Africa and Zimbabwe with the England A-team that winter, Swann took 21 wickets at 25.61 and averaged 22 with the bat. Wisden commented,
Swann did spin the ball appreciably and emerged as a definite candidate for elevation. He had the potential to become a genuine allrounder, with a wide range of attractive strokes, though he needs to use them more selectively.
In 1999, Swann was brought into the England squad for the final Test against New Zealand. He did not play, but featured in an ODI against South Africa following an injury to Ashley Giles. This tour also saw him miss the team bus once due to oversleeping.

In domestic cricket, Swann scored his highest first-class score of 183 in 2002, sharing a partnership of 318 with Northants captain Mike Hussey (310 not out).

He moved to Nottinghamshire in 2005, and finished the season of 2007 with 516 runs and 45 wickets, leading to his recall to the England side against Sri Lanka. While England fell heavily in defeat during the first match, Swann hit 34 to help seal victory in the second, and took four for 34 and hit 25 in the third as England took a two-one lead in the series.

An unsuccessful tour of New Zealand followed, and Swann was unable consistently to occupy a place in the England ODI side. He remained in the squad but faced tough competition from Samit Patel, who had already taken his first ODI five-wicket haul, against South Africa in his third match.


Personal life-

Swann married his wife Sarah on 29 January 2010. They live in Nottingham with their two cats, Max and Paddy. He also has an interest in football and revealed on the BBC's Football Focus that he supports Newcastle United and Blyth Spartans. Their first child, a boy, is due in February 2011.

He is the lead singer of the rock band Dr Comfort and the Lurid Revelations which plays cover songs in gigs around Nottinghamshire.

On 2 April 2010 he was stopped by police in West Bridgford, Nottingham following a party and was arrested after providing a positive breath test. He was charged in June, to appear in court in August, and initially told court that he was on his way to purchase screwdrivers in order to rescue his cat from under the floorboards.


Test 5-Wicket Hauls-

  • The column title Match refers to the Match Number of his career.
Graeme Swann's Test 5-Wicket Hauls
# Figures Match Against City/Country Venue Year Result
[1] 5/57 3  West Indies St John's, Antigua Antigua Recreation Ground 2009 Drawn
[2] 5/165 4  West Indies Bridgetown, Barbados Kensington Oval 2009 Drawn
[3] 5/110 13  South Africa Centurion, South Africa SuperSport Park 2009 Drawn
[4] 5/54 14  South Africa Durban, South Africa Kingsmead 2009 Won
[5] 5/90 17  Bangladesh Chittagong, Bangladesh Chittagong Divisional Stadium 2010 Won
[6] 5/127 17  Bangladesh Chittagong, Bangladesh Chittagong Divisional Stadium 2010 Won
[7] 5/76 20  Bangladesh Manchester, England Old Trafford Cricket Ground 2010 Won
[8] 6/65 22  Pakistan Birmingham, England Edgbaston Cricket Ground 2010 Won
[9] 5/62 24  Pakistan London, England Lords Cricket Ground 2010 Won
[10] 5/91 26  Australia Adelaide, Australia Adelaide Oval 2010 Won


Test 10-Wicket Match Hauls-

  • The column title Match refers to the Match Number of his career.
Graeme Swann's Test 10-Wicket Match Hauls
# Figures Match Against City/Country Venue Year Result
[1] 10/217 17  Bangladesh Chittagong, Bangladesh Chittagong Divisional Stadium 2010 Won

One Day International 5-Wicket Hauls-

Graeme Swann's One Day International 5-Wicket Hauls
# Figures Match Against City/Country Venue Year Result
[1] 5/28 23  Australia Chester-le-Street, England Riverside Ground 2009 Won

South Africa (2009/10):

At Centurion Swann was named man of the match following his impressive 5/110 and 85 runs in the first innings as England drew the first test.

At Durban Swann was again named man of the match after he finished with match figures of 9/164 as well as hitting a quick-fire 22 in England's first innings as they wrapped up a victory by an innings and 98 runs. This performance meant that Swann finished his first full year of Test cricket ranked third in the world bowling rankings, behind Dale Steyn and Mitchell Johnson.

Swann received a tied man of the series award along with Mark Boucher.

Bangladesh (2010):

Graeme Swann was named in the squad for the England tour of Bangladesh. He started of the tour by being named in three of the One Day Internationals in which he took figures of 3/32, 2/52 and 2/38. Then he was named in the squad for the first Test match in which he took match figures of 10/217 in both innings.

2010 ICC World Twenty20-

What has struck me most is that as an offspinner there are only certain ways you can get people out. But he [Swann] has more than that, he really changes his pace well. Normally when spinners bowl faster they lose their spin. But he can bowl quicker deliveries and still turn it. It is a very good gift and he can adapt it to all forms of the game. He is always trying to work out in his mind how to get wickets. That is what I like about him - he attacks.
– Shane Warne describing Swann as the "most improved cricketer in the world".
Swann was selected in England's 15 man squad for the 2010 ICC World Twenty20 in the West Indies. During the tournament, Swann played in all of England's fixtures, including the final against Australia, where he dismissed Australia captain Michael Clarke for 27 on his way to figures of 1/17 from his 4 overs. In the field he alertly caught Shane Watson in the slips after wicketkeeper Craig Kieswetter parried the ball toward Swann. Swann's performances won widespread applause for his ability to adapt to the different forms of the game and to retain control over his bowling. In May, he was named ECB Cricketer of the Year. The ECB declared his international career to be a "remarkable 12 months in which his attacking offspin and hard-hitting lower-order batting have proved instrumental in one of the most successful years that the England cricket team has ever known." Swann finished the tournament with 10 wickets at an average of 14.40, with best figures of 3/24 against South Africa in the super eights.

Pakistan (2010):

Pakistan toured England in August and September. Swann was ever-present in the four match Test series which England won 3-1, although he was only needed to bowl two overs in the first Test as the seamers bowled Pakistan out for 182 and 80. Swann also was not required in the first innings of the second Test at Edgbaston, before taking Test-best figures of 6-65 in the second innings as England took a 2-0 series lead. 

At The Oval, Pakistan won by 4 wickets, though Swann did take match figures of 7-118. In a remarkable Test at Lord's, England won by an innings and 225 runs victory, despite being 102-7 in their innings, with Swann taking 4-12 and 5-62. The latter achievement saw his name go on the Lord's honours board for the first time, however the match was overshadowed by newspaper allegations of Pakistan players being involved in spot-fixing.

Bowling style-

Swann is noted for being an attacking spinner, generally delivering the ball with plenty of flight and bounce. He is also capable of subtle changes of pace. Unlike many contemporary off-spinners he does not frequently bowl the doosra. Instead, his variations include a well-developed arm ball, and also a flatspinner delivery that he has nicknamed his "flying saucer ball" that rotates around its horizontal axis and generally bounces straight on.

FOR Kevin Pietersen, it was his greatest day. For Paul Collingwood, it was sweet revenge. And for Graeme Swann, it was the launch pad for a huge party.
The emotions tumbled out of England’s players on the outfield of the MCG after their crushing victory in the fourth Test. They will be the first England team in 24 years to return home with the urn whatever happens in the last Test in Sydney next week. 
Swann said: “Everyone will tell me to keep my feet on the ground, but mine are going to be about 15 feet in the air for the next 48 hours and I don’t care what anyone thinks.

“I was hoping I’d take the last wicket like I did in 2009, but for it to be Bres [Tim Bresnan] was very fitting. I’m so chuffed for the lad – he’s not very bright but he bowled unbelievably well throughout this match.
“To come back from the Perth defeat the way we did was amazing . We got a bit emotional in Perth and got caught up in the war of words and it cost us.” Collingwood, playing in his fourth Ashes series, recalled the hurt he felt four years ago when Australia humiliated England 5-0. 

“We’ve been through some horrible times and four years ago was one of them. Australia tend to rub your noses in it and let you know when they’ve beaten you – and that is what happened in 2006,” he said. “We have to savour these moments because they don’t come along that often, but I’m so proud of the lads and the way we’ve played.”

England’s players did a lap of honour for the 10,000 fans celebrating the victory and performed the dance craze of the tour – ‘The Sprinkler’ – for them.

“We have the best fans in the world,” said Pietersen. “They’ve had to go through 24 years of pain out here, so to be a part of it is amazing and it is the greatest day of my career.

Ashes glory in Melbourne-

 By - Sportsmail Reporter

England spinner Graeme Swann heralded an 'amazing series' after England retained the Ashes in Melbourne.

Swann took one of the three wickets needed to wrap up a first successful series in Australia for 24 years, as England recorded a crushing innings win at the MCG.

Chris Tremlett snared Mitchell Johnson, Swann had Peter Siddle caught in the deep and Tim Bresnan took the historic wicket of Ben Hilfenhaus to kickstart the celebrations.

Happy days: Graeme Swann celebrates on a lap of honour
Happy days: Graeme Swann celebrates on a lap of honour

'It's been an amazing series,' Swann told Sky. 'It's fluctuated so wildly. After the hammering we got in Perth it took a mammoth effort to come back.

'I think the difference to me is we had a few more guys in good nick with bat and ball. They have some unbelievable players but Ricky Ponting has not had a good score, how we've managed that I'll never know and he's one of the best players going.

'I was hoping I'd take the last wicket, but it's fitting that 'Bres' got it. I'm over the moon. I said before I wouldn't bother if I didn't take a wicket in the series as long as we won it.'
Bresnan, for whom the Test marked his first of the tour, admitted: 'It's an unbelievable feeling. I think we'll have a few decent days of celebrations now.

'The bowlers worked in partnerships and created pressure and that became wickets.'

Victory: England's team celebrate their Melbourne win
Victory: England's team celebrate their Melbourne win

Batsman Ian Bell admitted the win will take some time to sink in in the England dressing room.

'This is one of the best moments,' he said. 'Winning at the MCG in the Boxing Day Test, especially after this performance, it's fantastic.

'We're a bit gobsmacked. The performances we've done out here have been fantastic since we've arrived.

'To retain the Ashes, we've worked very hard for this. Now we have to prepare for Sydney and we hope to end the series on a high. We want to put in a good performance in Sydney.

'At times Australia have shown they're a good side but we've also played some good cricket. Our batting, bowling and fielding has been fantastic and it's good we've been able to play consistent cricket for some time now.'

England's spin master, Graeme Swann, enjoyed another great year in 2010, playing a pivotal role in series wins against Bangladesh and Pakistan as well as the World Twenty20 triumph over Australia.

Among the 31-year-old's many highlights were taking his first 10-wicket haul in a Test match, against Bangladesh, and twice taking five wickets or more in an innings in the Tests series against Pakistan.

He was England's leading wicket taker in their successful World Twenty20 campaign and also weighed in with plenty of valuable runs with the bat. 

Named as one of the Wisden Cricketers of the Year, Swann was singled out for further praise when he was named the ECB Cricketer of the Year in May. 

Now attempting to help his country to victory over Australia in the Ashes series, Swann's importance to England has never been greater. 

Were Swann to win the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award, he would become the first cricketer to do so since Andrew Flintoff lifted the trophy in 2005.

Bowler Graeme Swann, 31, who led the team's sprinkler dance, owned up to a "headache and ropey guts".
But all the players said it was back to business as they travel to Sydney determined to win the fifth and final Test.

Bowler Tim Bresnan, 25, tweeted: "Celebrating done. Sore head this morning. On to Sydney to wrap up the series.

"The Barmy Army have reinforcements heading up. Should be noisy!"
The team celebrations were lively but nowhere near as riotous as the party which followed the 2005 Ashes victory, when a famously blurry-eyed Andrew Flintoff and other players stayed up most of the night.

England coach Andy Flower said: "I am very proud of the way the guys have played, but there's a lot of cricket ahead on this tour."

Graeme Swann has been belatedly added to the International Cricket Council's contenders for player of the year.

The original list of 16 featured no England players, but ICC chairman Clive Lloyd told BBC Sport Swann's omission on Wednesday had been an "oversight". 

The off-spinner's absence had caused an outcry, after he took 49 Test wickets at 27.55 and 28 one-day wickets at 23.28 during the qualification period. 

Other names on the list include Ricky Ponting and Sachin Tendulkar. 
There are five South Africans - Hashim Amla, Jacques Kallis, Dale Steyn, AB de Villiers and Morne Morkel, plus Indians Mahendra Dhoni and Virender Sehwag.

From Wikipedia-