As England prepares for their upcoming five-match Test series against India, former spinner Graeme Swann has expressed optimism about England’s spin department. Led by experienced player Jack Leach, the spin attack now includes newcomers Rehan Ahmed, Tom Hartley, and Shoaib Bashir.
During England’s 2021 tour of India, the spinners faced challenges, with Leach standing out. However, the lack of support from Moeen Ali and Dom Bess highlighted England’s spinning struggles, prompting Joe Root to step up despite not being a regular spinner.
Despite their relative inexperience, the current spin setup offers diversity. Hartley and Bashir have impressed in domestic circuits, while Rehan, since his debut in late 2022, adds another dimension.
Swann, who recently mentored these spinners in Dubai, is confident in their abilities, especially on challenging pitches. He expressed his excitement, saying, “They can bowl, put it that way, and the guys that are on that trip in India, if conditions suit and they get the chance and they can handle the pressure of it, are genuinely exciting.”
While acknowledging their lack of experience compared to traditional English spinners, Swann remains upbeat. He highlighted the unpredictability of Hartley and Bashir, stating, “They’ve not got the years of experience that spinners used to have, or used to be a prerequisite of getting in the England team.”
Drawing comparisons to England’s last tour of India, where Ravi Ashwin and Axar Patel dominated, Swann emphasized the potential of England’s spin quartet. As England’s tour kicks off with the first Test in Hyderabad on January 25, all eyes will be on this new-look spin quartet. Swann’s optimism, coupled with the spinners’ unique traits, adds an element of intrigue to the upcoming series.