It stuck me the other day. Where have all the classy bowlers gone?
Compared to the mid-90s, consider the number of match-winning bowlers the top 7 teams in the world now have:
Then: McDermott, McGrath, Warne
Now: (Still) McGrath, Warne
Then: Donald, DeVilliers, A young fast Pollock
Now: A clearly underperforming Pollock
Then: Kumble, (Srinath ??)
Now: (Pathan ??)
Then: Murali, Vaas
Now: Murali, Vaas
Then: Ambrose, Walsh
Then: Wasim, Waqar, Mushtaq, Saqlain
Now: Shoaib (Chucker)
Then: Gough, Caddick
Now: Harmison, Flintoff (Flash in the pan types)
Most teams either have their old stars still chugging it out or have lost their bowling strengths completely (esp. SA & WI). I believe one-day cricket with its flat pitches, obsession with 300+ scores and a overall batsman oriented approach is the main reason for this decline. Good young bowlers are being smashed all over the park by mediocre batsmen. ICC will have to take definite steps to remedy this problem, which would seriously affect cricket enthusiasm in the long run.
On a similar note, check out Iqbal, a refreshingly nice movie directed by Nagesh Kukunoor. A great Hindi movie, for a change. Guess what? It is about a bowler.
(Too many blog entries on cricket......But I thought this one was worth it)