I think it's a tad too early to say that Saqlain Mushtaq is the
world's best spinner but I think it will sound trite in a couple of years.
As somebody put it on RSC : Is this guy amazing or what? He is as good a
performer in one-dayers as any great bowler can be, and imagine what havoc
he'll wreak on his test opponents ( as an attacking spinner).
I don't mean to attack Warne, but stats point out that all his good
performances have come against test playing nations whith traditional weakness
against spin. He did have a marginally good series against Pak in Pak, but hey,
their batting was reaching a low then ( with all controversy) and they lost
to SL too.Back to Warne.. I remember his first series against India and he
was the only bowler Indians were comfortable with and he was consistently
whacked. He still had those looping leg breaks and googlies though he bowls 'em
with much more confidence now. He did add the flipper but, hey, they are still
the average pace of Kumble's deliveries. Unfortunately India have seen Aus only in
one-days after that, and Warney still happens to be the Indian batsmen's best
friend. ( Atleast Kambli and Tendulkar used to get half their scores from his
overs)He got whacked by SL in the WC final too.. I think it is not wrong
to say that the Indians will miss Warne more than the Aussies.
On the other hand, Saqlain has had great one-day performances, mainly against
India and SL who are good spin playing nations. I was there to witness the 4th
ODI agains India and Pak, and beleive me, even as an Indian supporter , U had to
appreciate this guy's impeccable line & length, offbreaks, floaters and
everything else. I may be wrong saying that his performnces in tests can only be better but I seriously doubt it.
I maybe unfair to Warne as he might now be a better test spinner than he is at ODI's but
Saqlain is making a serious claim to his throne.