Image courtesy of: The Telegraph
Anderson noted that the topic of reverse swing has haunted England in the past
England pace bowler James Anderson has lashed out against former captain Bob Willis over his comments on Sky Sports, where he claimed that the national team had tampered with the ball throughout the recently concluded Champions Trophy.
Willis stated that there was no other reason for the umpires to change the ball during England’s loss to Sri Lanka.
England limited overs coach Ashley Giles also slammed Willis over his comments, noting that the team did not have to cheat to win.
“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.”
Many of England’s pace bowlers have been attempting to become masters of reverse swing and they seemed to achieve it in their matches against Australia and Sri Lanka.
However, Anderson stated that England had gotten the ball to reverse swing through hard work and not by any other means.
“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.”