July 13, 2012

Bowling

Reverse swing, a dying trade?

Abhishek Mukherjee

Though seamers enjoyed troubling batsmen in the initial stages of the Pallekele Test between Sri Lanka and Pakistan, Shaan Agha, in a blog in Dawn, says menacing reverse swing, the likes of which were on display in the 1990s, may not be seen or experienced in international cricket anymore.

Through the first half of the 1990’s, the two W’s ran through several batting line ups and it was virtually impossible to play their famous toe-crushers. Interestingly, they often did this on dead dry surfaces which in fact aid the ball to get roughed up faster. Many a bowler’s graveyard had now turned into a hunting ground for these fast men.

Was this the beginning of an era where reverse swing was going to rule the roost or was it the supreme most display of it that might never be witnessed again? The fast bowling era seems to be a distant memory and there is a dearth of genuine toe-crushing and helmet-wrecking men around the world today. Any reasonable concession or encouragement that refuels their kind should be welcomed with an open mind if not open arms.

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