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Watch: A new shot? Alex Lees invents reverse-reverse-paddle sweep off the cuff in county warm-up match

Watch: Alex Lees Showcases Inventive Reverse-Paddle Sweep In County Warm-Up Match
by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

Watch: Alex Lees introduced the latest addition to the sweep shot family, bamboozling the bowler with a reverse-reverse-paddle sweep in a winter tour game for Durham.

Pre-season tours are a good place for players to test out tweaks to their game ahead of the upcoming summer. Usually, a batter makes minor adjustments, tinkering with their defensive technique or working on their scoring methods against spin. But Lees decided to invent a new shot altogether.

Playing in the last match of Durham’s preparations for the county summer in Zimbabwe on March 14, Lees had already passed fifty when he brought out the shot. Facing Zimbabwe international spinner Wessly Madhevere, he shaped up as if to play a reverse sweep. But as the ball straightened and started to come in towards his body, he changed tack.


Instead of swinging his bat horizontally behind him and dropping his back knee for a ‘traditional’ reverse, or turning his bat face up to paddle the ball, he lifted his bat vertically face down in front of him. As the ball bounced up, he brought the face of his bat down almost directly on top of the ball, and paddled it down into the ground. The ball trickled past the stumps on the leg side, wide of the keeper, and the batters ran through for a couple of runs. Both keeper and bowler looked at each other, seemingly perplexed until the ball was thrown in.

With Lees having spent the winter out of the England Test side after a difficult first international summer, maybe that’s the kind of positivity that could see him recalled to the side. Surely Durham fans will be waiting with bated breath to see the shot wheeled out in their first Championship fixture in less than a month.

Watch: Alex Lees showcases inventive reverse-reverse-paddle sweep

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