Samir Chopra discusses the idea that culture plays a significant part in the development of fast bowlers ‘techniques. While acknowledging diversity, he puts forward a good argument to back up his ideas suggesting that there is an “Anglo-Saxon” style, A West Indian style and a Sub-Continental Style. As young player’s have traditionally ‘copied’ their heroes in backyard games, it is perhaps not surprising that those from similar cultures adopt the same methods.
However, I recently read a different view (apologies to the author who I cannot recall) that global exposure through satellite TV is leading to batting techniques becoming more similar across the world, as heroes can come from outside the youngster’s immediate environment. A counter argument is the deliberate move towards more aggressive,risk taking batting being promoted in Australia with the likes of Warner, Smith and Haddin. They are adopting a style that many would say is typically Australian.
One area where we are seeing a copying effect leading to less variability in technique is in terms of the methods adopted by young leg-spin bowlers. Almost without exception, every young leg-spinner who i have watched over the last 10 years in NZ and Australia ‘walks’ to the crease ala Mr Warne. While this method clearly suited Warne, it is leading to problems for many young bowlers who lack ‘oomph’ through the crease. It would be interesting to know if all young leg-spinners around the world are following the Warne Way.
A final point relates to the observation that sub-continental” bowlers were the “least tutored”. From a performance perspective this may well be an advantage as bowler’s with unusual actions are often the hardest for batter’s to pick; think of Murali, Malinga and Ashwin and the problems they have given batsmen over the years.