29 July 2010

The origins of bodyline

I thought Mike Selvey's piece in The Guardian yesterday - How Bob Wyatt's revelations blow a raspberry at history of bodyline - was really interesting. From my (not very) extensive reading about cricket back before the bodyline series, it did seem that bowling short to a very leg-side field was something that was used quite a bit before the acrimonious bodyline series. And now Selvey has unearthed Bob Wyatt's account of what sounds like bodyline at the hands of Learie Constantine.

His account of facing Constantine sounds more like war than keenly contested sport - a player carried off unconscious brought Wyatt to the wicket and then the first two balls he faced hit him on his helmetless head. An over like that now would be talked about for decades or possibly even centuries to come! Now I just need to find a copy of Wyatt's book to add to my cricketing library....

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

'The Bodyline Series' only really gained the notoriety it did because the Aussies lost a home series that they were expected to win. Short quick bowling at the body had been employed before.