93 Days Until The Ashes…
Shane Warne bowled “The Ball of the Century” to Mike Gatting in 1993, so it seems appropriate that we turn to the bowlers for number 93 in our Ashes 100-1 countdown as we focus on the men that have taken the most five fors in Ashes encounters. Perhaps surprisingly, it is not Warne that heads the table.
Just in case you need a reminder, here’s the ball of the century…
How Andrew Strauss and Andy Flower wish that they could call on the bowler who does – S.F. Barnes, who took an incredible 12 five fors in only 20 tests against Australia and 106 wickets in all in Ashes contests. Barnes is rated by many as the greatest bowler of all time, despite Don Bradman arguing that Bill O’Reilly must have been a greater bowler than Barnes because he commanded every ball developed in Barnes’s day — plus the googly. Neville Cardus told Barnes of Bradman’s remark. “It’s quite true,” he said, “I never bowled the `googly.'” Then with a glint in his eye, he added, “I never needed it.”
O’Reilly is one of a trio of great Australian leg spinners who have taken eight or more five fors against England along with Warne and Clarrie Grimmett. Elsewhere, the list of bowlers who have taken six or more five fors in Ashes battles is a who’s who of the many great English and Australian bowlers who have graced test cricket. That said there are some notable absentees such as Larwood (3 five fors), Laker (5), Trueman (5), Thomson (5), Benaud (4), Miller (3), Spofforth (3) and Verity (3).
It is perhaps surprising that Terry Alderman features in second place alongside Grimmett and Warne as surely you can only get Graham Gooch out once per innings, but it it testament to the spectacularly successful series’ he had in 1981 and 1989 – truly a master at bowling in English conditions.
|Most Ashes five fors|
|SF Barnes (Eng)||20||106||7/60||13/163||21.58||2.38||54.2||12||1|
|TM Alderman (Aus)||17||100||6/47||10/151||21.17||2.69||47.1||11||1|
|CV Grimmett (Aus)||22||106||6/37||11/82||32.44||2.25||86.4||11||2|
|T Richardson (Eng)||14||88||8/94||13/244||25.22||2.96||51.1||11||4|
|CTB Turner (Aus)||17||101||7/43||12/87||16.53||1.93||51.2||11||2|
|SK Warne (Aus)||36||195||8/71||12/246||23.25||2.52||55.1||11||4|
|GD McGrath (Aus)||30||157||8/38||9/82||20.92||2.70||46.3||10||0|
|MA Noble (Aus)||39||115||7/17||13/77||24.86||2.48||59.9||9||2|
|H Trumble (Aus)||31||141||8/65||12/89||20.88||2.23||55.9||9||3|
|CJ McDermott (Aus)||16||84||8/97||11/157||25.53||3.35||45.6||8||1|
|WJ O’Reilly (Aus)||19||102||7/54||11/129||25.36||1.97||77.0||8||3|
|AV Bedser (Eng)||21||104||7/44||14/99||27.49||2.42||67.9||7||2|
|IT Botham (Eng)||32||128||6/95||10/253||28.04||2.97||56.6||7||1|
|J Briggs (Eng)||31||97||6/45||12/136||20.55||2.42||50.9||7||3|
|G Giffen (Aus)||26||101||7/117||10/160||27.09||2.60||62.2||7||1|
|GF Lawson (Aus)||21||97||7/81||11/134||28.48||3.03||56.2||7||1|
|DK Lillee (Aus)||24||128||7/89||11/159||22.32||2.45||54.6||7||2|
|RGD Willis (Eng)||31||123||8/43||9/118||24.37||2.78||52.5||7||0|
|A Cotter (Aus)||16||67||7/148||9/221||28.59||3.31||51.7||6||0|
|RR Lindwall (Aus)||29||114||7/63||9/70||22.44||2.28||59.0||6||0|
|GD McKenzie (Aus)||25||96||7/153||7/101||31.34||2.41||77.9||6||0|
|AA Mailey (Aus)||18||86||9/121||13/236||34.12||3.38||60.4||6||2|
|W Rhodes (Eng)||41||109||8/68||15/124||24.00||2.71||53.1||6||1|
|MW Tate (Eng)||20||83||6/99||11/228||30.60||1.98||92.6||6||1|
Where next? Choose from the latest cricket stories…
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