Our resident entomologist (conceptual pun alert!) waxes encyclopedic on the varieties of bowling—the brutal pace bowler, swing, leg break, off spin, reverse swing, Yorker, Googly—and the rise of the doosra.
The annals of the game, recorded in Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack, its statistical compendium, go back two hundred and fifty years. The spectators’ collective memory therefore instantly populates the field with recent stars and heroes long dead: ferocious Malcolm Marshall, whose very name put batsmen in a mucksweat; Ranjitsinhji, Maharajah Jam Sahib of Nawanagar, airy artist of stroke-play; C.B. Fry, captain of Hampshire and nearly King of Albania; Dr. W.G. Grace, vast, bearded Hercules of nineteenth-century cricket; and on further back to the Great Mynn, Black Bess of the Mint, and Old Wat (a dog), who, with his master Mr. Trumper, defeated Two Gentlemen of Middlesex by a score of 7 runs to 6… on a distant hillside, long, long ago.