...to be a great left arm bowler? Not much at all, I believe. "Fifteen Paces" should be enough. Or even less, if we pick Wasim Akram as the model instead of Alan Davidson.
Left arm bowlers are rare, and great left arm bowlers are counted on a finger or two. Chaminda Vaas is one of the finest bowlers in our era and certainly the best non-Wasim left arm swing bowler this side of Davidson. He completed 400 wickets in one dayers today. Striking, isn't it?
Striking not because of the number 400 but because that zone of 400+ ODI scalpers now has a population density of 50% for left armers!! Only Murali and Waqar have more than 400 wickets if we count outside of Wazzy & Vaasy. And there are 15 right handers in this world to each left hander, they say! This ratio does not apply to batting - batting is essentially a double handed skill with separate roles for each hand. It should apply to bowling though.
And that amazing left-right ratio in 400+ wicket takers does not look like fading away anytime soon because all right handed bowlers who could have crossed the line are now retired. Only Brett Lee with 303 wickets looks like making it to 400 in the coming few years.
At last lefties have a chance to take their rightful half, right?
Wrong. The date belongs to the summit of right handedness and hence spoils all fun derived by us 'wrong uns' to celebrate our peculiarity. For today is also the 100th birth centenary of the greatest right handed sportsman, Don Bradman. And even leftie Alan Davidson making his observation on the much right handed Don today hardly pleases us.
Damn, did Vaas have to do it today?
- A non Sri-Lankan left arm medium pace bowler & a non-Australian right-handed batsman