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Twenty20 has brought many new skills into the game - for batsmen, bowlers and even fielders. One of the more noticeable is the use of the slower-ball bouncer which is now commonly used by fast bowlers. England got excellent value from it during the 2010 World Twenty20 and it has already been seen during the current event in Sri Lanka. In the Daily Telegraph, Simon Hughes looks at the evolution and impact of the delivery.
There is a real art to it, ensuring that the ball still rises up like a fast bouncer, but arrives 15mph slower. With his deceptive action and slippery speed, Lasith Malinga’s version is wickedly good. Stuart Broad is an excellent practitioner too. Since he charges into bowl with great enthusiasm and has a dramatic ‘gather’ at the crease, the batsman is readying himself for something rapid. But Broad can then cut his fingers across the line of delivery either way to reduce the speed. This might be especially effective on Colombo’s dry surfaces where the ball will grip and stick in the pitch.