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Vernon Philander

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Post by Biltong Sat 31 Mar 2012, 12:33 pm

Perhaps supporters of South African domestic cricket are not surprised by the meteoric rise Vernon Philander has enjoyed over the past 5 months, it has taken him only 7 tests to become the joint second fastest test bowler to reach 50 test wickets, it surely has to be the quickest rise into the top ten rankings in the history of the ICC test bowling rankings as well.

You need to go back 5 years to really get into the meat of Vernon Philander. It was at the 2007 ICC world cup where Philander made his debut for the Proteas against Ireland where he opened his international tally with 4 wickets for 12 runs off 5.5 overs, a more promising start he could hardly have asked for.

The rest of the tournament however didn’t go according to script, his next 6 matches only yielded 2 more wickets for 197 runs and he was promptly sent back to his franchise to be forgotten about. At this point it seemed Philander’s chances were used up and he would simply disappear into the wilderness never to be heard or seen from again.

But Philander took the criticism to heart, worked on his fitness and accuracy and at the beginning of the 2009/10 season found form. He ended the season at the top of the Domestic pile with figures of 9 matches, 260.1 overs, 45 wickets at an average of 14.73, best bowling figures of 5/40 and 2 five wicket hauls.

In 2010/11 he followed that with figures of 7 matches, 213.1 overs, 35 wickets at an average of 16.11 and best bowling figures of 6/61 for the season.

Philander was on a roll and had no intention of remaining just another journeyman in domestic cricket, in 2011/12 he continued to impress and after 5 supersport matches sported figures of 180.3 overs, 25 wickets at an average of 16.84 and best bowling figures for the season of 7/61.

On 6 November his call up to the Proteas was announced.

Former Pakistan coach Richard Pybus had this to say when Philander heeded the call up to the Proteas. “There is no reason why he can’t develop into a Matthew Hoggard or James Anderson type of bowler… if he worked on his swing. He has the ability to seam the ball as well.”

His debut test against Australia could hardly have gone any better, his maiden test wicket of Phil Hughes coincided with the 500th catch of Mark Boucher’s career, it landed short of a length around middle and off and then went away, the delivery quicker than the previous, Hughes got squared up as he angled the face of the bat in hope, but the ball took the edge and went into Boucher's gloves in a flash.

Fast forward to the rain affected 3rd test at the basin reserve in Wellington New Zealand, it is the afternoon session on the 26th of March, day 4: Philander to Bracewell; he takes wicket No.50, short of a good length outside off, Bracewell hung his bat out loosely as he wasn't sure about playing or leaving and got an inside edge onto the stumps.

It took Vernon Philander only 135 days, 7 tests and 206.4 overs to take his 50th wicket. The joint second fastest in history, the fastest to 50 wickets for 116 years.

His test figures currently stand at 51 wickets at an average of 13.71 and a strike rate of 35.55. What lies ahead for Vernon Philander nobody knows and whether he will be able to maintain those averages and strike rates are highly unlikely, for the amount of cricket played these days do tend to tax the body of a medium fast bowler to a greater extent, add to that the fact that batsmen will learn how to deal with him, but his future is in his own hands. His ability to bowl six accurate line and length balls per over and his comparison to a modern day Glenn McGrath is not entirely unfounded, but I certainly look forward to see more of him.

The tongue in cheek question is though, how would Richard Pybus rephrase his comment on Philander in relation to Jimmy Anderson now?


Last edited by biltongbek on Sat 31 Mar 2012, 12:54 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by Corporalhumblebucket Sat 31 Mar 2012, 12:43 pm

Good article. "a modern day Glenn McGrath". How time flies Erm

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Post by Jetty Sat 31 Mar 2012, 2:22 pm

biltongbek, how you do think he would do in ODIs now? Will he only play Tests?

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Post by Biltong Sat 31 Mar 2012, 3:03 pm

Jetty, I have seen Kirsten is very keen on experimenting and getting a wider squad of players, I am sure he will try him at some stage.

The situation is though that, Tsotsobe, Parnell, Botha seem to be in good form with the ODi's so not much space for him though,
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Post by JDizzle Sat 31 Mar 2012, 3:22 pm

Very, very good bowler. Will be interesting to see how he gets on in the sub continent, as his main strengths of nip and swing will be negated there and that is always the acid test of a very good Test bowler becoming a great Test bowler. I fully expect him to cause mayhem in England this summer though, he should love the conditions. If he keeps performed as he is though, I can't see any reason why his average will go above the low 20's with the ball.

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Post by Guest Sat 31 Mar 2012, 4:59 pm

Philander is a class bowler, he can succed on the sub-contient, Praveen kumar does, and IMO Philander is a quicker version of him.

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Post by JDizzle Sat 31 Mar 2012, 5:41 pm

To be fair, Praveen actually hasn't played a Test on the sub continent yet, so we will have to see on him! And it is a lot easier for Praveen as he was brought up there. I see no reason why Philander can't do it there, but we will have to wait and see!

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Post by Guest Sat 31 Mar 2012, 6:04 pm

He appears to be a quicker version of Praveen Kumar...

both deadly accurate, swing the ball a lot, and offers control to the captain.

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Post by Carrotdude Sat 31 Mar 2012, 10:22 pm

Being perfectly honest, the prospect of our batsmen facing Philander this summer scares the crap out of me. It's ok though, play him out and then we just have to face Steyn and Morkel...

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Post by Guest Sun 01 Apr 2012, 2:49 pm

Carrotdude wrote:Being perfectly honest, the prospect of our batsmen facing Philander this summer scares the crap out of me. It's ok though, play him out and then we just have to face Steyn and Morkel...

agree with all of that lol OK

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Post by msp83 Tue 03 Apr 2012, 4:10 pm

When Philander was recalled to the SA squad early this winter, I just left it as just another addition to the squad and nothing more, as memories of his previous outings for the SA side promissed not a lot. But then I was surprised to see him in the XI, ahead of Lonwabo Tsotsobe, whom I thought bowled pretty OK against the Indians in SA's previous test series. But then, afterthat, it has been an astounding 5 months, he has earned the respect of the world, we don't know how will he do in tougher, batting friendly conditions, but his perfect line and length, and a yard of added pace from the previous version should help him in such conditions, and of course he has the current best fast bowler, and one of the best of all times, bowling alongside him, and there is a terrifying, fast, bouncy al be it a touch inconsistent lad coming in as the support act, and there is another similar prospect waiting in the wings, to be supported by one of the best ever all-rounders the game has seen. If needed, SA can even land a half-decent spinner who looks to take wickets on the park. All together, he's in the perfect setting to further cause greater trouble for batsmen around the world.

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Post by Guest Tue 03 Apr 2012, 5:10 pm

Must admit i was also suprised at first to see him given the nod over tstosbe. But he hasnt looked back since, and facing this south african bowling attack in the summer is frightening.

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Post by atletico86 Fri 06 Apr 2012, 12:14 pm

he has just taken a 5for in his 1st 20overs of county cricket for somerset, he cud still take more as middlesex are only 7down.

He has been a phenomenon since playing test cricket, and I cant wait till the summer when the two best fast-bowling attacks lock horns. The South African trio just edge for me as each bowler brings a different challenge

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Post by msp83 Fri 06 Apr 2012, 4:18 pm

undoubtedly, SA and England have the best current bowling attacks in the world at present. Although Graeme Swann's presence gives an added dimenssion to the English attack, the presence of Jacques Kallis as a batting all-rounder is the addition for South Africa. Imran Tahir, although nowhere close to Swann's class, is the first real attacking spinner that SA has come up with in recent times. So an SA attack of Steyn, Philander, Morkel, Tahir and Kallis vs Anderson, Broad, Swann and Bresnan/Finn/Tremlett. I think Kallis just edge it for SA, as England's 5th bowler choice since Fredye Flintoff's retirement has been rather pedestrian. I just wish Fredye would also have been fit and available!. If England has Samit Patel, SA has JP Duminy, if we are talking about serious parttime options. If England has a good deal of choice in terms of fast bowling, SA isn't far behind, with a young man who bowls in the 150s with a debut 7 wicket performance waiting in the wings.

All in all, a facinating test series it should be!.

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Post by Guest Fri 06 Apr 2012, 4:32 pm

philander will love english conditions, and the ball will hoop around for him, just like it did with PK Vernon Philander 1347041234

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Post by hodge Fri 06 Apr 2012, 4:34 pm

will get there first,

If he can get a 5 for at Taunton he can get a 5 for anywhere in England Rolling Eyes

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Post by JDizzle Fri 06 Apr 2012, 4:38 pm

We said this about Phil Hughes though. We said that we had given him the chance to get used to English conditions when he played brilliantly for Middlesex, but we thought up some plans and negated him.

I know it isn't really the same for Philander, but I am clinging to the hope that we can formulate a plan to play him and execute it! I mean, he can't keep averaging 14 with the ball in Tests... Can he?

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Post by hodge Fri 06 Apr 2012, 4:46 pm

he was getting good bounce out of the wicket at taunton yesterday, up around people heads a good bit.

His first over looked seriously quick from the stands, i only just saw it being side on.

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Post by Guest Fri 06 Apr 2012, 4:48 pm

he tends to bowl around 85mph.

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Post by msp83 Fri 06 Apr 2012, 5:40 pm

When Philander came in to international cricket, he was bowling around the 130 mark, now in his new and improved version, there certainly is an addition of a yard of pace. besides, his control over line and length is terrific.

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Post by Guest Fri 06 Apr 2012, 5:43 pm

there's no doubt about it. He's a class act, esepcially considering he started off as an odi specalist for SA, transformed himself completely clap

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Post by Fists of Fury Mon 16 Apr 2012, 4:17 pm

Comprehensively outbowled by Chris Wright, Keith Barker and even Peter Trego at Edgbaston.

Looked pretty slow, didn't get much movement through the air, and showed only a hint of seam. Warwickshire played him fairly comfortably, though he was of course very accurate and thus not easy to score from (though Jeetan Patel rubbished that when walloping him for six).

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