If Paul Harris was a busty woman (or Jesse Ryder-shaped), it would be tempting, in the style of tabloid sub-editors everywhere, to say that ‘he has his knockers’. Undoubtedly, he has had his fair share of criticism (not least from Geoffrey Boycott, who described the South African spinner as “a buffet bowler — you just help yourself“).
His critics may be reconsidering (or perhaps not – Boycott isn’t known for reversing his original stance) following Harris’ career-best performance in the Third Test against Australia. While it is true that the match was a dead rubber with no bearing on the series, Australia don’t suffer many innings defeats, so when they do it’s worth sitting up and taking notice. Given the sub-par performance of another noted spinner in the same match, it may be time to re-evaluate Harris’ credentials.
The people behind the world rankings for Test bowlers obviously agree, as Harris is – at the time of writing – newly installed in the Top 10.