Bowling is an ingenious art and it is the scale to measure the strength of skill in cricket. Although, batting is at the center of glamour, bowling is in control of the game. Different bowling styles have unique approaches to put their advantages on use. The types also depend on specialists who apply them on pitch and their personal skills. The style of a bowler, while running to bowl can be different, but the basic aspect is similar and standardized. Seam bowling involves the most ingenious techniques to swing the ball. It is methodical and crafty with a mix of physical strength and knowledge based on experience.
For swing bowlers, the wrist position, the front arm and maintaining a straight line across the crease are most important. The wrist position is pivotal because, without proper position, the ball would not swing also, it would not be fast enough. The ball needs to land on the seam to be perfect and the shiny side of the ball should be on the pitch. The ideal technique to hold the ball for seam bowlers is to put the fingers to both up and down the seam and put the thumb underneath the stitch. At the point of release, fingers should be straightly behind the ball. It offers the necessary pace to the ball and is also effective in getting better revs. Practically, different bowlers hold the ball differently. To swing the ball, the wrist must be right behind the ball. For bowlers who find it hard to keep the wrist straight, an extra angling of the ball is helpful.
For most bowlers there is a choice to either pace or swing the ball. However, it is possible to attain both through correct measures and mix of techniques. While bowling, the front arm becomes a crucial factor to attain both. Some bowlers undertake long run ups to bowl fast, but that can be a waste of energy in long tournaments. For games that can expand up to two or three days, bowlers are exhausted and it is an utmost necessity to keep up with their fitness. For this reason, the run up should be a mix of slow steps, jogging and fast before the delivery. The momentum at delivering the ball should be maintained through a step wise approach. The top speed of the run up should be while approaching the wicket. While releasing the ball, a balanced stature must be maintained.
As swinging is also dependent on the pitch and the quality of the ball, bowler's cannot be always sure about the strategy. The ball may swing or it may not, depending on pitch condition. Most of the times, bowlers try to change the grip by opening up their fingers to hold the ball. Bowling cross the seam is also another way to deal with the issue. However, when the ball is new, the strategy does not work. The best way to deal with the situation is to keep off from trying to swing it when it does not. Because, that could only pour out runs at the opposite end. At this point, bowling stump to stump and cutters could bring better results. The cutters work particularly well in slow and spinning wicket.
It is a widely accepted fact in cricket that swing bowlers have been the strongest attack against batsmen. Swing bowls put batsmen at a discomfort zone. It is because they cannot pick up their batting line early and it is hard to find the accurate position to play such bowls. When a delivery really swings, batsmen have to track it down to the point when they hit the bat and that become tough when the delivery is mixed with considerable speed. Additionally, they have to be sure about not to make contact with the ball if the line up does not match. Hence, swing bowling has been the prime weapon against batsmen.
Bret Lee was a bowler who was apt with mixing both swing and pace. This made him the top player to rule the game for almost a decade. Jeff Thomson and Dennis Lillee have been legendary bowlers who were known for their apt seam skill. Bowlers should maintain their form and their specialties applying them in diversified condition. Concentration and flexibility are crucial for bowlers.
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