~~Tampering ball to get reverse swing an art~~!

Published: Wednesday, October 11, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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Kolkata:Pakistan bowling legend Wasim Akram said that shaping the ball to get reverse swing was an art that the western countries had learnt from the Pakistanis.

Talking to the reporters here, Akram while commenting on the recent ball tampering controversy said, ''When the ball was reverse swinging for miles during the last Ashes series, everyone said it's reverse swing. But if we do it, it is called ball tampering.''

"What happened was that the edges of the ball near the stitches get roughed up and naturally the ball swings more on one side. If it is ball tampering, it is an art,'' he stated.

''What we do is to instruct the fielders to throw the ball to the keeper's end on the first bounce on the pitch. Naturally after repetitive throws on the hard pitch, one side of the ball gets roughed up. It is one of the ploys we use for reverse swing.'' Akram also said he passed off some of his wisdom to the English cricketers during his decade-long stay in the Counties.

''While I was with the Lancashire for ten years, I passed on some of this art to Andrew Flintoff and I am sure Waqar did the same to Simon Jones during his stint of County cricket,'' Wasim added.

Talking about the captaincy fiasco during which Younis Khan and Mohd Yusuf interchanged places for a couple of times, Wasim said, ''It is a very bad precedence. It will certainly affect the moral of the Pakistan team before such huge tournament, but I guess this is in our culture.''

However, Wasim was much more positive about its bearing on the team when he said it would certainly have some effect on the junior cricketers.

''However, the team has a lot of faith. It has embraced religion and can forget and forgive. It would be easier for them to move on,'' he opined.

''The immediate job at hand for the new Chairman of the PCB is to instil discipline into the side. Younis Khan is no five-year-old to behave such irresponsibly. I think the problem is vice-captain, who cannot wait to see their captain injured or out of their side so that they can step into their shoes. My advice to them is that they should wait for their turn,'' he reiterated.

''When I was the captain, I had a fantastic vice-captain in Moin Khan. He waited for his chance. In india this never happens,'' he said.

He also lamented the fact that the Chairman and the administrators of the PCB are nominated on ad-hoc basis by the Pakistan President, the patron-in-chief, so they have no real say, while in India it is a democratically elected forum which is vibrant in its existence.


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