Left arm-spinner

Most teams prefer to have a left arm spinner in the side because the ball that drifts in and spin away from the right handed batsman is regarded as the most difficult ball to negotiate.

Wilfred Rodes (1877-1973) of England was a master at the art of curving the ball in and controlling its flight, variation and turn. Derek Underwood who dominated English cricket for quite sometime was regarded as a freak bowler, who successfully bowled spin at medium pace and was very accurate.

Bishen Singh Bedi had a bowling action made of pure gold. Watching Bishen ‘Paaji’ bowl in the nets, I used to often wonder why other spin bowlers expend so much strength and energy in their deliveries. That is how easy he made bowling look.

The left arm spinner is the mirror image of the off-spinner, except that he bowls more around the wicket than the off-spinner. One of the reasons is that there are more right handed batsmen, and also because the ball pitched outside the line of the leg stump does not fetch LBW’s.

Left arm-spinners, bowling over the wicket are left with few options of getting the batsman out. But it surprises me that to a left-handed batsman, the off-spinner prefers to bowl over the wicket, even on pitches not assisting spin, instead of going round the wicket like a left arm spinner does to the right-handed batsman on the similar tracks.

A good left arm-spinner is very important for any side. He can be a stock-bowler when the team needs keep down the runs, and an attacking bowler when taking wickets is the need of the hour. The left arm-spinner’s ball comes into the batsman in the air and on pitching leaves him and that make him a difficult proposition, and more useful than an off-spinner.

Left arm spinner’s grip is a mirror image of an off-spinner.


Remember : The left arm-spinner is more effective when bowling against the breeze or when the breeze is coming from third man to mid-on, which helps the ball drift into the batsman.

First learn the skill to spin the ball in the air and off the pitch accurately. Then proceed to the learn variations.