Cummins Overrated?

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melanChronic

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same deal i made a bet with that same mate before smith made his debut that he'd get 30+ test tons - i hope to be cashing in, in the next year or 2.
Hang on a sec...

You bet significant dollars on a debutant legspinner batting at 8 with a complete scatterbrain technique to make 30+ test tons?

Hats off to you but that was an insane thing to do. I hope you got good odds from your mate.
 

Perth bloke

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Hang on a sec...

You bet significant dollars on a debutant legspinner batting at 8 with a complete scatterbrain technique to make 30+ test tons?

Hats off to you but that was an insane thing to do. I hope you got good odds from your mate.
Sounds like absolute BS to me. Lots of tall tales being thrown around here
 

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The Cryptkeeper

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Cummins is - in some ways - hampered by who he plays beside. Where Lillee played alongside Thompson and Warne/McGrath only really had each other to steal wickets off the other (with respect to Gillespie et al, they simply weren't at the level of the other two) Cummins has to deal with Hazelwood stealing wickets from him in conditions that suit his accuracy and bounce, Starc in conditions that suit his speed and his swing, and Lyon in subcontinent conditions that suit him more than the other two quicks.

There's only 10 wickets to get an innings, and if your teammates chip in you're not going to get the big 5 fors or the 10 wicket hauls that McGrath might have gotten in conditions that suit. It's only going to get worse if Green can make a go of it, too.

You say that Warne and McGrath only had each other to take wickets off yet:

Gillespie - 259 wickets
Lee - 310 wickets
MacGill - 208 wickets (in the 16 tests he and Warne played together interestingly MacGill took 82 wickets to Warne's 74 and at a much better average)

So, I am not entirely sure that your argument holds up.
 

Gough

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You say that Warne and McGrath only had each other to take wickets off yet:

Gillespie - 259 wickets
Lee - 310 wickets
MacGill - 208 wickets (although he did often play instead of Warne)

So, I am not entirely sure that your argument holds up.
If you look at the wickets taken by Lillee's contemporaries you could argue that apart from a couple of years with Thommo at flat chat he benefitted from having irregular bowling partnerships.
 

Gethelred

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You say that Warne and McGrath only had each other to take wickets off yet:

Gillespie - 259 wickets
Lee - 310 wickets
MacGill - 208 wickets (in the 16 tests he and Warne played together interestingly MacGill took 82 wickets to Warne's 74 and at a much better average)

So, I am not entirely sure that your argument holds up.
Gillespie was a mixture of extreme quality prior to a huuuuuge dropoff. Lee's tearaway youth and disciplined later years are coloured by the fact that he just didn't bowl on the stumps nearly enough. And MacGill was - outside of the tests in which Warne was suspended - only played when conditions were conducive for spin, ergo naturally his average is higher.

MacGill's a classic leggie; 'I'm going to bowl 5 balls that rip and turn and one or two will be an absolute jaffa, but that sixth ball is going to be short or a full toss'. He's always going to be threatening, but he's also more of a risk as a bowler. Warne could drop a ball on a fifty cent coin. If he dropped it short, it was because he planned something later which required the bat to be thinking back foot.

I say Warne and McGrath only had each other to take wickets away because they ostensibly began and ended their careers about the same time, and combined for 1300 odd test wickets. The others lacked both the longevity and the average. Cummins - on the other hand - has played his entire career with the blokes he's competed against.
 

Perth bloke

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Gillespie was a mixture of extreme quality prior to a huuuuuge dropoff. Lee's tearaway youth and disciplined later years are coloured by the fact that he just didn't bowl on the stumps nearly enough. And MacGill was - outside of the tests in which Warne was suspended - only played when conditions were conducive for spin, ergo naturally his average is higher.

MacGill's a classic leggie; 'I'm going to bowl 5 balls that rip and turn and one or two will be an absolute jaffa, but that sixth ball is going to be short or a full toss'. He's always going to be threatening, but he's also more of a risk as a bowler. Warne could drop a ball on a fifty cent coin. If he dropped it short, it was because he planned something later which required the bat to be thinking back foot.

I say Warne and McGrath only had each other to take wickets away because they ostensibly began and ended their careers about the same time, and combined for 1300 odd test wickets. The others lacked both the longevity and the average. Cummins - on the other hand - has played his entire career with the blokes he's competed against.
Too right. Cummins is a legend
 

The Cryptkeeper

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Gillespie was a mixture of extreme quality prior to a huuuuuge dropoff. Lee's tearaway youth and disciplined later years are coloured by the fact that he just didn't bowl on the stumps nearly enough. And MacGill was - outside of the tests in which Warne was suspended - only played when conditions were conducive for spin, ergo naturally his average is higher.

MacGill's a classic leggie; 'I'm going to bowl 5 balls that rip and turn and one or two will be an absolute jaffa, but that sixth ball is going to be short or a full toss'. He's always going to be threatening, but he's also more of a risk as a bowler. Warne could drop a ball on a fifty cent coin. If he dropped it short, it was because he planned something later which required the bat to be thinking back foot.

I say Warne and McGrath only had each other to take wickets away because they ostensibly began and ended their careers about the same time, and combined for 1300 odd test wickets. The others lacked both the longevity and the average. Cummins - on the other hand - has played his entire career with the blokes he's competed against.

Mate, I agree that Cummins is a brilliant bowler. He's the best bowler in the world and by quite some margin too.

But for all of your post above, between Lee and Gillepsie alone there is nearly 600 test wickets. Gillespie (259 wickets at 26.1) may have dropped away at the end but he was at least the equal of both Starc (252 at 26.7) and Hazelwood (202/25.8). Despite McGrath and Warne being legends, we always had a quality second quick taking wickets...and often a good third quick as well. I don't rate Brett Lee especially highly but 300 wickets is still 300 wickets.

No question MacGill isn't Warne's shoelace but again, his record was very good. We weren't simply a two man band is what I am getting at.
 

Gethelred

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Mate, I agree that Cummins is a brilliant bowler. He's the best bowler in the world and by quite some margin too.

But for all of your post above, between Lee and Gillepsie alone there is nearly 600 test wickets. Gillespie (259 wickets at 26.1) may have dropped away at the end but he was at least the equal of both Starc (252 at 26.7) and Hazelwood (202/25.8). Despite McGrath and Warne being legends, we always had a quality second quick taking wickets...and often a good third quick as well. I don't rate Brett Lee especially highly but 300 wickets is still 300 wickets.

No question MacGill isn't Warne's shoelace but again, his record was very good. We weren't simply a two man band is what I am getting at.
A bloke in the 2nd test thread had a crack at what I'm saying as being due to recency bias. This was my reply:
I think it's funny you're looking at recency bias and apportioning what I said to that alone.

Below are the strike rates of Warne, Gillespie, Lee and McGill in Test Cricket.

Warne: 57.49
Gillespie: 54.96
Lee: 53.33
McGill: 54.02

Now, here are the strike rates of Lyon, Starc and Hazlewood.

Lyon: 63.16
Starc: 48.04
Hazlewood: 55.57

Cummins: 46.33, for comparison's sake, and McGrath: 51.95.

What this tells us is that the lowest strike rate among the new group is Hazlewood, and he's still striking at just over what Gillespie is at over his career. Lyon's the stock bowler, and his average/strike rate fairs unfavorably against Warne and McGill, but he's also an offie in Australia. Starc strikes waaay more than each of the players you mention.

What this means is that the other bowlers - with the exception of Lyon - are striking more often than McGrath's contempories, ie that they're taking wickets off him, which is what I said.

Now, perhaps you can take your claim of recency bias, and shove it up your arse, hmm?
Essentially, he plays with the equivalent of Gillespie in Hazlewood, and the superior - in terms of strike rate - of McGrath and Warne in Starc. If they're striking so often, it means that - if you transplanted McGrath into this team - he'd take less wickets at the same average because Starc would keep taking wickets at the same rate, and Hazlewood would as well.

The thing that sets this current crop apart is the frequency with which they take wickets as well as their averages. They strike more and more often than other attacks we've previously had.
 

The Cryptkeeper

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A bloke in the 2nd test thread had a crack at what I'm saying as being due to recency bias. This was my reply:

Essentially, he plays with the equivalent of Gillespie in Hazlewood, and the superior - in terms of strike rate - of McGrath and Warne in Starc. If they're striking so often, it means that - if you transplanted McGrath into this team - he'd take less wickets at the same average because Starc would keep taking wickets at the same rate, and Hazlewood would as well.

The thing that sets this current crop apart is the frequency with which they take wickets as well as their averages. They strike more and more often than other attacks we've previously had.

It's certainly an interesting discussion regarding the bona fides of the respective bowling lineups. I think what gets lost is the quality of batsman the respective lineups faced too. Obviously it is difficult to quantify but I would have thought the likes of Tendulkar, Dravid, Kallis, Lara, etc were much tougher to dismiss than some of the clowns masquerading as test batsmen these days.

Either way, with regard to the title of this thread...it is nonsense. Assuming he stays fit, Pat Cummins will likely be regarded as one of the top handful of quick bowlers to have ever played test cricket by the time he is done. The guy is a superstar.
 

Gethelred

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It's certainly an interesting discussion regarding the bona fides of the respective bowling lineups. I think what gets lost is the quality of batsman the respective lineups faced too. Obviously it is difficult to quantify but I would have thought the likes of Tendulkar, Dravid, Kallis, Lara, etc were much tougher to dismiss than some of the clowns masquerading as test batsmen these days.
People bring this up a bit, and it's certainly a factor, but the other issue that people don't talk about is the fact that for a bit - between 1990-ish and 2009 - pitches were absolute roads. Runs and tons were scored for fun, and home boards loved it; it guaranteed 5 days, their superstars got celebrated, the wheels got greased and the spice flowed.

Now, pretty much every country to greater or lesser degrees tampers with their wickets more than they used to, in order to give their bowlers and bats a particular edge at home where they once would've offered a sporting chance. While bats are getting worse, it's due as much to a lack of genuine away condition prep as it is to the other bane of the cricket enthusiast, T20; and the good bats aren't necessarily getting worse, just the current vogue towards bowlers (and long may it reign) is favouring them in terms of the pitches being produced.

More bowler friendly wickets + batsman who aren't willing to rotate the strike with singles coupled with a T20 inspired inability to truly wait for the bad ball + lack of genuine practice matches and tour games in away conditions = much lower averages, much less away wins, and much, much inferior overall away performances, which is genuinely considered to be the way to judge a player into good or great.

You've also got Australia just starting to come out of the junior development hole that they fell into during the mid eighties and only picked up again late nineties/early 2000's. In that patch - at the start of which had cricket as the summer sport, footy/rugby as the winter - CA oversaw tennis, soccer, netball, surfing etc taking potential players away from cricket at huge rates, leading to significant numbers dropping off. Kids walked away from the game, and that lead to diluted senior comps and diluted talent bases from which to rebuild in the wake of that great era all retiring together. We're just starting to come out the other side of that, and we should start producing players of a reasonable standard again in a few years; here's hoping Pucovski/Green/Patterson et al can all make a go of it with the blade over the next few years.
 

cricketnut14

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Hang on a sec...

You bet significant dollars on a debutant legspinner batting at 8 with a complete scatterbrain technique to make 30+ test tons?

Hats off to you but that was an insane thing to do. I hope you got good odds from your mate.

he was averaging 50+ for NSW when he made his test debut :)
 

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Perth bloke

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People bring this up a bit, and it's certainly a factor, but the other issue that people don't talk about is the fact that for a bit - between 1990-ish and 2009 - pitches were absolute roads. Runs and tons were scored for fun, and home boards loved it; it guaranteed 5 days, their superstars got celebrated, the wheels got greased and the spice flowed.

Now, pretty much every country to greater or lesser degrees tampers with their wickets more than they used to, in order to give their bowlers and bats a particular edge at home where they once would've offered a sporting chance. While bats are getting worse, it's due as much to a lack of genuine away condition prep as it is to the other bane of the cricket enthusiast, T20; and the good bats aren't necessarily getting worse, just the current vogue towards bowlers (and long may it reign) is favouring them in terms of the pitches being produced.

More bowler friendly wickets + batsman who aren't willing to rotate the strike with singles coupled with a T20 inspired inability to truly wait for the bad ball + lack of genuine practice matches and tour games in away conditions = much lower averages, much less away wins, and much, much inferior overall away performances, which is genuinely considered to be the way to judge a player into good or great.
Not in NZ mate during that time or any other time on days one or two at least
 

Gethelred

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Exactly what I said. NZ pitches aren't roads until the last two days but during that time frame you mentioned they were heavily seamer friendly for most of the test
I didn't get that from the post you made, my apologies.

NZ had a problem for most of that patch; they simply weren't good enough. They lacked the bowlers and the batsman after Fleming retired to really put serious run pressure on an opponent on the scoreboard, and they didn't have the bowling to really compete outside of Martin - who was, at best, medium pace - and Vettori. Compare that NZ lineup to the teams Australia, India and SA and even Sri Lanka could field at the time (the less said about England the better) and you begin to see the issue; Sri Lanka had two of their best ever spinners in careers one after another in Murali then Herath, coupled with bats like Jayawardene and Sangakarra, and NZ for that period of time had what?

Their best hope was to expose their opponents (outside of Australian and SA opposition, who used to bully them at home due to familiarity with the conditions) to a little additional bounce on a seaming track, and to bore them out with Vettori. So, their pitches still played to their strengths, just that they weren't all that strong compared to both their contempories and their current incarnation.
 

Perth bloke

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I didn't get that from the post you made, my apologies.

NZ had a problem for most of that patch; they simply weren't good enough. They lacked the bowlers and the batsman after Fleming retired to really put serious run pressure on an opponent on the scoreboard, and they didn't have the bowling to really compete outside of Martin - who was, at best, medium pace - and Vettori. Compare that NZ lineup to the teams Australia, India and SA and even Sri Lanka could field at the time (the less said about England the better) and you begin to see the issue; Sri Lanka had two of their best ever spinners in careers one after another in Murali then Herath, coupled with bats like Jayawardene and Sangakarra, and NZ for that period of time had what?

Their best hope was to expose their opponents (outside of Australian and SA opposition, who used to bully them at home due to familiarity with the conditions) to a little additional bounce on a seaming track, and to bore them out with Vettori. So, their pitches still played to their strengths, just that they weren't all that strong compared to both their contempories and their current incarnation.
You don't reckon Chris cairns or Shane bond could bowl? Or Nash? Doull? Morrison? They just couldn't bat mate. Fleming made his runs in the last four years of his career and none of his peers really had the technique for it in tests after crowe retired
 

Gethelred

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You don't reckon Chris cairns or Shane bond could bowl? Or Nash? Doull? Morrison? They just couldn't bat mate. Fleming made his runs in the last four years of his career and none of his peers really had the technique for it in tests after crowe retired
I reckon they were average, and very samey. That's the problem.
 

The Cryptkeeper

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I didn't get that from the post you made, my apologies.

NZ had a problem for most of that patch; they simply weren't good enough. They lacked the bowlers and the batsman after Fleming retired to really put serious run pressure on an opponent on the scoreboard, and they didn't have the bowling to really compete outside of Martin - who was, at best, medium pace - and Vettori. Compare that NZ lineup to the teams Australia, India and SA and even Sri Lanka could field at the time (the less said about England the better) and you begin to see the issue; Sri Lanka had two of their best ever spinners in careers one after another in Murali then Herath, coupled with bats like Jayawardene and Sangakarra, and NZ for that period of time had what?

Their best hope was to expose their opponents (outside of Australian and SA opposition, who used to bully them at home due to familiarity with the conditions) to a little additional bounce on a seaming track, and to bore them out with Vettori. So, their pitches still played to their strengths, just that they weren't all that strong compared to both their contempories and their current incarnation.

They were very unlucky that Shane Bond's body was held together by gaffer tape and elastic bands.

That guy was genuinely quick, hostile and a proven wicket taker. The fact that he only ended up with 87 wickets (average 22) from 18 tests is a tragedy.

edit - Perth bloke beat me to it. Bond was a 145-150km/h killing machine. A kiwi Allan Donald.

edit II - strike rate 38.8 in tests...yikes.
 
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Perth bloke

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They were very unlucky that Shane Bond's body was held together with gaffer tape and elastic bands.

That guy was genuinely quick, hostile and a proven wicket taker. The fact that he only ended up with 87 wickets (average 22) from 18 tests is a tragedy.

edit - Perth bloke beat me to it. Bond was a 145-150km/h killing machine. A kiwi Allan Donald.
Too right. I remember watching him as a kid and just feeling that same sense of awe and anticipation that Lee and Tait and akhtar used make me feel. They were the four horsemen for their generation of genuinely quick demon bowlers. The difference for Bond was his late swing and gorgeous action. No one could play him when he was in rhythm
 

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