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Masterful Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar has shared the secrets on how to get the cricket ball to reverse swing.
He noted that increasing bowling speed is one of the key steps to achieving it as the ball has to travel quickly enough for reverse swing to happen.
The Rawalpindi Express added that bowlers also have to understand how to use the wind to their advantage.
“The first thing to learn about reverse swing is to know how to use the wind to your advantage. Even if you are running in with the wind or against it, you must be able to send down the ball in a manner that it dips properly,” he said on Sportskeeda’s YouTube channel as quoted by Cricwick.
“You need to increase your bowling speed to reverse swing the ball. Unless you add a couple of yards, the ball will not travel quickly enough.”
Other essential aspects of getting reverse swing are how old the ball is and shining one side so that it becomes heavier.
“We used to make the shiny side heavier so that there was an additional weight on one side of the ball,” Akhtar said. “When running in against the wind, the ball is sent down like an out-swinger but, in the end, it tails in and becomes an in-cutter yorker.
“There is a lot of science in reverse swing. We used to utilise the crease at times, change our actions, and come across the stumps as well. The angle of reverse swing is very important. The amount of reverse swing also depends on how old the ball is. In a nutshell, the extra pace is needed, and the ball should be old enough to reverse swing.”
The Pakistan team will be in action once again later this month when they play three ODIs against the Netherlands from August 16 to 21.
The men in green will then travel to the UAE for the Asia Cup, which will take place from August 27 to September 11.
Pakistan squad for Netherlands ODIs – Babar Azam (captain), Shadab Khan (vice-captain), Abdullah Shafique, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, Imam-ul-Haq, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Haris, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan (wicketkeeper), Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Naseem Shah, Salman Ali Agha, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shahnawaz Dahani and Zahid Mehmood
Pakistan squad for Asia Cup – Babar Azam (captain), Shadab Khan (vice-captain), Asif Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Haider Ali, Haris Rauf, Iftikhar Ahmed, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan (wicketkeeper), Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Naseem Shah, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shahnawaz Dahani and Usman Qadir