Pakistan news October 2, 2011

Gul opposed to legalising ball tampering


Umar Gul, the Pakistan fast bowler, has claimed ball tampering is not new to cricket and that there are legal and illegal methods to change the condition of the ball. He was also opposed to legalising ball tampering, in contrast to Shoaib Akhtar, who wrote in his recent autobiography that it wasn't a bad idea to "set rules" for tampering.

"The claims [of ball tampering] have always emerged against Pakistan but have never been proved," Gul told reporters at National Cricket Stadium in Karachi. "There are many ways to tamper with the ball that are illegal, like using your nail, but there are other ways to change the condition that are legal. A player can throw the ball on the bounce to make it rough or the ball can be damaged when it hits the advertising boards on the boundary."

During the ICC World Twenty20 in 2009, Gul's ability to reverse-swing the ball early had drawn concern from the New Zealand camp but he shrugged it off. Gul did not think ball tampering should be made legal, though, saying it would make it too easy to bowl reverse swing, which is an art, and some of the beauty of the game would be lost if the practice was legalised. "I don't think the way is to legalise it. Leave cricket with its traditional ways rather than making changes that would take all the charm out of it."

Gul also responded to comments in Akhtar's autobiography about Sachin Tendulkar being afraid of the former Pakistan fast bowler. "I can't say specifically that I saw Tendulkar running away from Shoaib, but no one can deny that when Shoaib was at his fastest and best the world's best batsmen were nervous against him and there is no batsmen who is not nervous or ruffled when facing a pure fast bowler," Gul said. "Even Brian Lara, who I rate as the world's best batsman, admitted to feeling ruffled when he was hit on the helmet by a bouncer from Shoaib."

Pakistan leave for the UAE on October 15 to take on Sri Lanka in two Tests, three ODIs and two Twenty20s, and Gul, who was rested for the tour of Zimbabwe, is likely to be back in the squad. "I am all fit but need a flow for which I have to have lengthy bowling spells," Gul said. "I am bowling regularly and will be playing first-class cricket. If selected, I will train in the nets to quickly get back my form."

Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on October 5, 2011, 15:22 GMT

    After 2 Ws i can say it with conviction that Umar Gul is the best bowler Pakistan ever had. He is more consistant than Shoaib nd Asif. He is more accurate than them. He plays with passion for Pakistan which i like in him.

  • Harmon on October 3, 2011, 14:07 GMT

    Umar gul said that "The claims [of ball tampering] have always emerged against Pakistan but have never been proved.

    Ha Ha Ha.

  • Dummy4 on October 3, 2011, 11:25 GMT

    ya its true all batsmen are afraid of fast bowlers and that's the only reason why bowlers are restricts by ICC and allows to use one short pitch delivery once in an over, only to protect batsmen like Sachin and others

  • Anant on October 3, 2011, 8:24 GMT

    Pak players need to show there talent in game and not in the wording....

  • Faridoon on October 3, 2011, 4:48 GMT

    Good to hear great comments about Gul, he is a class act. You can always tell which players are genuinely passionate about their country and the game. We wish you good health, great match fitness and success.

  • Dummy4 on October 3, 2011, 4:31 GMT

    PCC players, talk something good for cricket, don't try to correct your wrong

  • khurram on October 2, 2011, 20:27 GMT

    many coments here talk about only pak bowlers tht thy do wrong. But the thng u so called experts ned to undrstand tht reverse swing only hapens if bal condition change but with some talent coz not al can do thy do rub it, xtra bounce on throw. So if pak bowler reverse it thn its tempring and whn english or zaher khan,parven kumar or srilankan do thn its art? And about guls coment yes i agre that thre r already many legal ways to change ball condition thre is no ned2 change rules.

  • bani on October 2, 2011, 17:50 GMT

    Many are claiming here that swing and reverse swing are pure art and they have nothing to do with ball tampering? Then why bowlers do that? for nothing? Why is that only PAK bowlers ask to make ball tampering legal? Why is that WI great fast bowlers were never alleged of ball tampering?

  • Ryo on October 2, 2011, 17:03 GMT

    @Kiranphy: BRILLIANT! The English journo's are once again getting into a tizzy because someone accused their hallowed boys of ball tampering... which happens, everywhere on any cricket field you can think of, which is why it's ridiculous to even get angry at anymore. Let us not forget about Stuart Broad deliberately stepping on the ball and running his spikes across it, scuffing the ball up. The English journos like to point fingers at others, but can't take the same stick. I'm of the group that believes Ball Tampering should just be legalised, using anything that is found naturally on the field of play. You already tamper with the ball anyway, putting saliva and rubbing it etc

  • kiran on October 2, 2011, 13:33 GMT

    see how aderson tampering the ball

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