In cricket, reverse swing has been used as a potent weapon by fast bowlers to get rid of batsmen over the years. In the past Pakistan pacers excelled in the art of bowling reverse-swing. Later, most fast bowlers picked it up. Pakistan’s former pacers like Sarfraz Nawaz, Imran Khan, Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis are thought to be the best exponents of reverse swing, though the latter two also excelled with their added ability to convert them into toe-crushers.
What is reverse swing?
When the ball is new, it swings on either side because of the shine. But as the ball gets older, it loses its shine and fails to swing. To make the old ball swing, players keep one side of the ball shiny while the other gets rough or worn out. Reverse swing is the swing a bowler gets with the old ball towards the shiny side of the old ball rather than the conventional swing a bowler gets. If a bowler is bowling an outswinger, reverse-swing makes it an inswinger and vice-versa.
How to bowl reverse swing?
A reverse swinging delivery is one of the crafts Pakistan pacers excelled in. If one wants to bowl the reverse swinging delivery which comes back into the batsman, he needs to hold the ball with its seam point towards the slips. A normal delivery will outswing with this seam position. But in reverse swing, with the rough side of the ball on the off-side, the shiny side will be on leg-side. Your wrist should be at a certain degree (preferably at 20-30 degree) towards the batsmen. It is very important to not change the bowling style and not alter your action, hold, wrist or any other thing that reveals that you are trying something new. Fast movement of the body is key here.
How to bat against reverse swing?
To deal with reverse-swing, the batsman need to keep the bat down and not have a high back-lift. High back-lifts won’t allow you to bring your bat down in time to block an incoming reverse-swinging ball. Also, a batsman should play the ball late is order to tackle the late movement. Experts also say the feet movement of the batsman should be top class to tackle reverse-swing.
Who invented reverse swing, who bowled it for the first time?
There is no doubt that reverse swing was born in Pakistan. Salim Mir, a pacer at the domestic level in Pakistan, used reverse swing in the matches. He later taught it to Pakistan pacer Sarfraz Nawaz, who used it at the Test level. He later passed on the knowledge of reverse-swing to Imran Khan. And then came the duo of Wasim Akran and Waqar Younis who used reverse-swing to devastating effect.
How to treat the cricket ball to get it ready for reverse swing?
Once we have a 25-20 overs old ball, it can be prepared to reverse swing. It must be kept shiny on one side and rough on the other. The rough side should not be repaired and the shiny side must be properly shone by the players. The subcontinent pitches, which are dry and rough are considered to the best for reverse swing as the ball gets worn up quickly on a rough and dry pitch
What is the science of reverse swing?