Graeme Swann Biography
Graeme Swann is a former English cricketer, born in Northamptonshire, England on 24 March 1979. He is a right arm off-break bowler and a right-handed batsman. Being a bowling all-rounder, he had decent batting averages in Test and T20 cricket.
Swann broke into domestic cricket in 1998 for Northamptonshire. He impressed the selectors with not only the ball but also with the bat scoring 92 and 111 against Leicestershire.
He played for the England U19 team soon after in the 1998 World Cup and emerged victorious. Swann also became a part of England A squad that toured South Africa and Zimbabwe. He managed 21 wickets and came into the spotlight.
He got his ODI cap on 23 January 2000 against South Africa. ‘Chin’ as he is called, bowled 5 overs and returned with figures of 0/24. England went on to win the match by 9 wickets as they chased down South Africa’s total of 184 in the 40th over. The coach Duncan Fletcher decided to rest him from the next game not only because of his inefficient bowling but also his laidback attitude.
He had to wait for 8 years to play again for England. His next international match was his T20I debut on 5 February 2008 against New Zealand. England set a target of 185 in their 20 overs. Swann contributed a run-a-ball 15. In the second innings, he bowled 2 overs and his figures read 1/16. New Zealand got all-out for 152 in the 20th over. England won the match by 32 runs.
Swann’s Test debut came on 11 December 2008 against India in Chennai. The series was the first in India after the 26/11 terror attacks. Swann bamboozled the Indian batsmen as he picked up Gautam Gambhir and Rahul Dravid in his first over. He returned with match figures of 38.3 - 2 - 145 - 4. India won the match as they chased down the target of 387 in the 4th innings with 6 wickets in hand.
Rise to Glory
His career graph went upwards after the Test series in India. He replaced Monty Panesar in the third Test against West Indies in February 2009. He took his first five-wicket haul in the first innings. He returned with figures of 5/57. In the fourth Test, he once again took a five-wicket haul in the first innings. Swann’s contribution as a spinner was immense given the balance of the England team.
In May 2009, the first home Test of the season for England was played at the Lord’s against the West Indies. Swann scored 63 and took 3/16. He had become England’s first choice spinner in the Ashes 2009 over Monty Panesar.
He had to be dropped from the ODI team in the middle of a series against South Africa in 2012 due to an elbow injury. He was replaced by another spinner James Tredwell.
He again had to miss out from the New Zealand series in March 2013 as the injury re-occurred. This injury became a major factor for his retirement.
Swann played for Northamptonshire from 1998 to 2004 in English County Cricket. He switched to Nottinghamshire in 2005. He played up to 2013 for them.
Swann's Record in Numbers
Graeme Swann has picked up 255 wickets in 60 Tests with an innings best of 6/65 and match best of 10/132. He has 17 five-wicket hauls and 3 ten-wicket hauls to his name. With the bat, he has 1370 runs under his belt at an average of 22.1 with his highest score being 85. He has scored five Test fifties.
In ODIs, he has 104 wickets in 79 matches with a best of 5/28 (his only five-wicket haul in ODIs). He also has 500 runs at an average of 13.89 and a best of 34.
In T20Is, Swann has taken 51 wickets in 39 matches with a best of 3/13. He has 104 T20I runs at an average of 20.8 with his highest score being 34.
He is the second bowler in the history of Test cricket to take 2 wickets in the first over in Test cricket.
Swann announced his retirement from all forms of cricket on 21 December 2013. Since 2014, he is working with the BBC as a summarizer in BBC’s Test Match Special. He also took up the commentary job in the 2018 Big Bash League.