Trouble in Oz land(-worma)
First story of the day..this article from Bob Simpson...on his coaching days with Aus team...and what ails them today. Some of it applies quite directly to the problems we face...even otherwise a very interesting read. One point that I specifically wanted to highlight...something which we also often discuss:
Dennis Lillee headed this programme for over a decade and his brief was to develop and prepare young promising new ball bowlers to replace injured or ageing Test and Sheffield Shield bowlers.
By the look of the bare cupboard around the states, Pace Australia has hardly been a raging success. In fact the very title "Pace Australia" may well have derailed the search for new ball bowlers before it began.
In those days pace was the only thing considered. With Dennis Lillee, Jeff Thomson and the West Indies, the ability to have new ball success any other way was virtually ignored. Dennis Lillee was a great fast bowler who had enormous success.
Unfortunately trying to copy a great cricketer's personal style is not always the best way. I think this is one of the reasons we don't have swing bowlers around today. I often wonder how many potential medium pacers have been destroyed/lost due to Australia's insane drive for pace alone.
Perhaps under Damien Fleming, a genuine swing bowler, we will see a more balanced new ball approach. While the Australian Cricket Academy has received credit for the development of young cricketers, how successful has it really been?