Champions Trophy 2013 June 16, 2013

Anderson angered by Willis claims

ESPNcricinfo staff
12

James Anderson has responded angrily to the suggestion that England have been involved in ball-tampering during the Champions Trophy.

Bob Willis, the former England captain, sparked the controversy in his role as a TV commentator by saying there was no other reason for the umpires to change the ball as they did midway through Sri Lanka's run chase at The Oval. Ashley Giles launched a strong defence yesterday and now Anderson has followed up in his newspaper column.

"It's very disappointing and frustrating that anyone, but especially a former England captain, should say these things, especially when we're preparing for a massive game," Anderson told the Mail on Sunday.

"The fact is people can think what they like. We know the truth, I can state categorically that no one in the England team has ever tampered with a ball and we won't allow comments made by someone like Bob Willis to worry us.

England are always keen to try and get the ball to reverse swing, as they did against Australia in their opening match of the Champions Trophy, and Anderson is adamant it is all down to their own hard work and skill.

"Reverse swing has been an issue in cricket for a while," he added. "But just because one bowler or one team reverse a ball better than another on a given day doesn't mean to say he or they have been tampering. It just means they're more skilful.

"I can assure you that if any of the England bowlers achieve it then it is within the letter of the laws. When we played Australia the square at Edgbaston was very dry and there were a lot of dry patches that got roughed up and resulted in scuffs on the ball.

"At The Oval against Sri Lanka the other day there were nowhere near as many dry areas and that's mainly why the ball didn't reverse anywhere near as much."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Cricket_theBestGame on June 18, 2013, 0:55 GMT

    "Reverse swing has been an issue in cricket for a while," he added. "But just because one bowler or one team reverse a ball better than another on a given day doesn't mean to say he or they have been tampering. It just means they're more skilful. "

    where was mr anderson or the like 20 odd years ago....i'm sure cricketers and fans alike of pakistan must be asking ! ;)

  • YorkshirePudding on June 17, 2013, 14:02 GMT

    @Chesty-la-roux, actually the Aussies did get some nice swing, and only 2 england bowlers actually managed to get any reverse going, Flintoff and Jones.

    As for the 2006/7 debacle in Aus, that was the last great outing of an Australian team with 4-5 all time greats in it, in home conditions while England had Flintoff as cptain who was in a perpetual hangover state, they also didnt have have Jones, Harmisson was off his game and the backup bowers were at the time inexperienced.

    @Dashgar, the ball was inspected at the request of Sangakarra, as he wanted the ball changed when it started to reverse, probably to keep himself safe.

  • Baseball-Sucks on June 17, 2013, 9:36 GMT

    "Anderson angered by Willis claims". Hmmmm...I think we should not pay too much attention to what Anderson says when he is angry. Its coz Anderson can be angered easily by hitting a couple of boundaries off one of his overs. I remember the other day, he was going at Sanga coz Sanga hit a century. So, getting angry n questioning the credibility of a great player like Wills... sounds like Anderson.

  • on June 17, 2013, 9:19 GMT

    Well English legends should support their team and not complaint. And yes Mr. Wills should apoligise immediately and settle this. "just because one bowler or one team reverse a ball better than another on a given day doesn't mean to say he or they have been tampering. It just means they're more skillful". And Ashes is just around the corner. This is the series that i want to watch. Some real cricket. England Vs Australia , stop all the controversies and lets watch some cricket

  • Chesty-la-roux on June 17, 2013, 7:44 GMT

    Well let me see, 2005, england gain prodigious reverse swing and win the ashes while Australias legendary bowlers can barely get the ball to deviate a fraction. 2006, england, while getting hammered by Pakistan, complain about ball tampering triggering a chain of events they could not have imagined. As a result ball tampering is still very much in the spotlight the following year and the reverse swing of years past mysteriously deserts the same english bowlers who were previously unplayable. England hammered 5-0. Next ashes in 2009 ball tampering no longer in the headlines and england once again remember how to reverse the ball. Lets wait and see how england swing the ball over the next few months.

  • UbiquitousWALL on June 17, 2013, 7:19 GMT

    Hmmm.. Anderson's reaction raises a lot of eyebrows, if there was nothing to be worried, why retaliate and in such a manner where you are questioning the credibility of a former top notch English Fast Bowler, not good. Something is wrong somewhere.

  • on June 17, 2013, 3:36 GMT

    "just because one bowler or one team reverse a ball better than another on a given day doesn't mean to say he or they have been tampering. It just means they're more skillful".

    LOL. That, coming from an English player is a classic!

    Consider the number of times they've been on Pakistan's case when they got reverse swing from a 30+ over ball. These days the balls don't even get older than 25 overs!

  • SLSup on June 17, 2013, 1:58 GMT

    Dravid_Gravitas: OR, more importantly, why not those who take issues with Bob Willis for talking about it simply state he was wrong in saying that Alim Dar is on the case. IF they cannot contradict that statement there must a be a reason for it. Why attack Willis without attacking the PRIMARY PREMISE of his argument? In fact, WHY ATTACK if not out of fear? : )

  • DeckChairand6pack on June 16, 2013, 21:21 GMT

    Ask Mike Atherton, believe he's a bit of an expert in this particular field.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on June 16, 2013, 16:19 GMT

    Why is nobody askin the umpires the question - if they thought the ball was tampered?

  • Cricket_theBestGame on June 18, 2013, 0:55 GMT

    "Reverse swing has been an issue in cricket for a while," he added. "But just because one bowler or one team reverse a ball better than another on a given day doesn't mean to say he or they have been tampering. It just means they're more skilful. "

    where was mr anderson or the like 20 odd years ago....i'm sure cricketers and fans alike of pakistan must be asking ! ;)

  • YorkshirePudding on June 17, 2013, 14:02 GMT

    @Chesty-la-roux, actually the Aussies did get some nice swing, and only 2 england bowlers actually managed to get any reverse going, Flintoff and Jones.

    As for the 2006/7 debacle in Aus, that was the last great outing of an Australian team with 4-5 all time greats in it, in home conditions while England had Flintoff as cptain who was in a perpetual hangover state, they also didnt have have Jones, Harmisson was off his game and the backup bowers were at the time inexperienced.

    @Dashgar, the ball was inspected at the request of Sangakarra, as he wanted the ball changed when it started to reverse, probably to keep himself safe.

  • Baseball-Sucks on June 17, 2013, 9:36 GMT

    "Anderson angered by Willis claims". Hmmmm...I think we should not pay too much attention to what Anderson says when he is angry. Its coz Anderson can be angered easily by hitting a couple of boundaries off one of his overs. I remember the other day, he was going at Sanga coz Sanga hit a century. So, getting angry n questioning the credibility of a great player like Wills... sounds like Anderson.

  • on June 17, 2013, 9:19 GMT

    Well English legends should support their team and not complaint. And yes Mr. Wills should apoligise immediately and settle this. "just because one bowler or one team reverse a ball better than another on a given day doesn't mean to say he or they have been tampering. It just means they're more skillful". And Ashes is just around the corner. This is the series that i want to watch. Some real cricket. England Vs Australia , stop all the controversies and lets watch some cricket

  • Chesty-la-roux on June 17, 2013, 7:44 GMT

    Well let me see, 2005, england gain prodigious reverse swing and win the ashes while Australias legendary bowlers can barely get the ball to deviate a fraction. 2006, england, while getting hammered by Pakistan, complain about ball tampering triggering a chain of events they could not have imagined. As a result ball tampering is still very much in the spotlight the following year and the reverse swing of years past mysteriously deserts the same english bowlers who were previously unplayable. England hammered 5-0. Next ashes in 2009 ball tampering no longer in the headlines and england once again remember how to reverse the ball. Lets wait and see how england swing the ball over the next few months.

  • UbiquitousWALL on June 17, 2013, 7:19 GMT

    Hmmm.. Anderson's reaction raises a lot of eyebrows, if there was nothing to be worried, why retaliate and in such a manner where you are questioning the credibility of a former top notch English Fast Bowler, not good. Something is wrong somewhere.

  • on June 17, 2013, 3:36 GMT

    "just because one bowler or one team reverse a ball better than another on a given day doesn't mean to say he or they have been tampering. It just means they're more skillful".

    LOL. That, coming from an English player is a classic!

    Consider the number of times they've been on Pakistan's case when they got reverse swing from a 30+ over ball. These days the balls don't even get older than 25 overs!

  • SLSup on June 17, 2013, 1:58 GMT

    Dravid_Gravitas: OR, more importantly, why not those who take issues with Bob Willis for talking about it simply state he was wrong in saying that Alim Dar is on the case. IF they cannot contradict that statement there must a be a reason for it. Why attack Willis without attacking the PRIMARY PREMISE of his argument? In fact, WHY ATTACK if not out of fear? : )

  • DeckChairand6pack on June 16, 2013, 21:21 GMT

    Ask Mike Atherton, believe he's a bit of an expert in this particular field.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on June 16, 2013, 16:19 GMT

    Why is nobody askin the umpires the question - if they thought the ball was tampered?

  • Dashgar on June 16, 2013, 14:59 GMT

    Anderson relies so heavily on the condition of the ball. That's why he is constantly asking umpires to change ones that aren't working as he wants. I don't think England are the sort of team who would tamper but they certainly try to gain every tiny advantage from the ball. I guess it's good tactics to keep rejecting balls you can't be destructive with. Just like not walking is good tactics. Use the ball you're given, stop harassing umpires, and people won't accuse you of stuff like this.

  • milepost on June 16, 2013, 11:58 GMT

    There's no evidence so Bob Willis should apologise immediately and settle this. It is quite something to suggest players are cheating.

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  • milepost on June 16, 2013, 11:58 GMT

    There's no evidence so Bob Willis should apologise immediately and settle this. It is quite something to suggest players are cheating.

  • Dashgar on June 16, 2013, 14:59 GMT

    Anderson relies so heavily on the condition of the ball. That's why he is constantly asking umpires to change ones that aren't working as he wants. I don't think England are the sort of team who would tamper but they certainly try to gain every tiny advantage from the ball. I guess it's good tactics to keep rejecting balls you can't be destructive with. Just like not walking is good tactics. Use the ball you're given, stop harassing umpires, and people won't accuse you of stuff like this.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on June 16, 2013, 16:19 GMT

    Why is nobody askin the umpires the question - if they thought the ball was tampered?

  • DeckChairand6pack on June 16, 2013, 21:21 GMT

    Ask Mike Atherton, believe he's a bit of an expert in this particular field.

  • SLSup on June 17, 2013, 1:58 GMT

    Dravid_Gravitas: OR, more importantly, why not those who take issues with Bob Willis for talking about it simply state he was wrong in saying that Alim Dar is on the case. IF they cannot contradict that statement there must a be a reason for it. Why attack Willis without attacking the PRIMARY PREMISE of his argument? In fact, WHY ATTACK if not out of fear? : )

  • on June 17, 2013, 3:36 GMT

    "just because one bowler or one team reverse a ball better than another on a given day doesn't mean to say he or they have been tampering. It just means they're more skillful".

    LOL. That, coming from an English player is a classic!

    Consider the number of times they've been on Pakistan's case when they got reverse swing from a 30+ over ball. These days the balls don't even get older than 25 overs!

  • UbiquitousWALL on June 17, 2013, 7:19 GMT

    Hmmm.. Anderson's reaction raises a lot of eyebrows, if there was nothing to be worried, why retaliate and in such a manner where you are questioning the credibility of a former top notch English Fast Bowler, not good. Something is wrong somewhere.

  • Chesty-la-roux on June 17, 2013, 7:44 GMT

    Well let me see, 2005, england gain prodigious reverse swing and win the ashes while Australias legendary bowlers can barely get the ball to deviate a fraction. 2006, england, while getting hammered by Pakistan, complain about ball tampering triggering a chain of events they could not have imagined. As a result ball tampering is still very much in the spotlight the following year and the reverse swing of years past mysteriously deserts the same english bowlers who were previously unplayable. England hammered 5-0. Next ashes in 2009 ball tampering no longer in the headlines and england once again remember how to reverse the ball. Lets wait and see how england swing the ball over the next few months.

  • on June 17, 2013, 9:19 GMT

    Well English legends should support their team and not complaint. And yes Mr. Wills should apoligise immediately and settle this. "just because one bowler or one team reverse a ball better than another on a given day doesn't mean to say he or they have been tampering. It just means they're more skillful". And Ashes is just around the corner. This is the series that i want to watch. Some real cricket. England Vs Australia , stop all the controversies and lets watch some cricket

  • Baseball-Sucks on June 17, 2013, 9:36 GMT

    "Anderson angered by Willis claims". Hmmmm...I think we should not pay too much attention to what Anderson says when he is angry. Its coz Anderson can be angered easily by hitting a couple of boundaries off one of his overs. I remember the other day, he was going at Sanga coz Sanga hit a century. So, getting angry n questioning the credibility of a great player like Wills... sounds like Anderson.