The skipper of the England cricket team, Andrew Strauss, has said that Graeme Swann’s presence in the second test match at Headingly could have made a lot of difference. The England team went into the second test match without a specialist spinner. Graeme Swann was not included in the team and he was replaced by the young bowling sensation Steve Finn. But, this decision of the team management proved to be wrong. Finn wasn’t able to make any impact on the South African batsmen. The Proteas batsmen negotiated Finn with ease.
Strauss said that he expected the wicket to help the fast bowlers. But, the wicket started assisting the spinners from the fourth day. In the second innings of South Africa, Pietersen, who is a part time off spinner, was getting a lot of turn and the South African batsmen were finding it difficult to handle him. Had Swann been included in the side, the result of the test match could have been different.
Strauss praised Nottinghamshire batsman James Taylor for his gutsy inning at Headingly. Strauss said that he is pretty impressed with the temperament that Taylor showed in his very first test match. As per Strauss, it was not easy for a debutant to face the South African bowlers at that point of time. But, the young Nottinghamshire man played incredibly well and assisted Pietersen to bring the England team out of trouble.
On being asked whether Pietersen issue is having some affect on the unity of the team, Strauss answered that the team is completely united and there is nothing to worry about the unity of the side. Strauss said that the England players are in a positive frame of mind at the moment and they would try their best to save the no. 1 ranking of England.