Former Pakistan fast bowler Sarfraz Nawaz - widely regarded as a pioneer of reverse swing - refused to accept the implication that the skill requires ball-tampering. "This is ridiculous to say reverse swing is cheating," Sarfraz told AFP. "You can achieve reverse swing without tampering with the ball. "There is a conventional swing which is done with the new ball and then there is reverse swing which is achieved with an old ball and it has been proved in laboratories that reverse swing is a scientific phenomenon." Sarfraz took 177 wickets in 55 Tests, including an amazing nine for 86 against Australia at Melbourne in 1979 that included a spell of seven wickets for a mere one run in 33 balls. "When I passed the art to Imran he developed it and then taught Wasim and Waqar, and in those times everyone called it cheating but when the Englishmen started to reverse swing it became an art," said Sarfraz.
Sarfraz Nawaz "When I passed the art of reverse-swing to Imran Khan he developed it and then taught Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis, and in those times everyone called it cheating but when the Englishmen started to reverse swing it suddenly became an art" #Cricket— Saj Sadiq (@Saj_PakPassion) March 31, 2018
"It was and will remain an art, but resorting to tampering is cheating and that was what Australians did to beat South Africa and were deservedly punished. "Conventional swing is simple - if the seam is angled toward the slip fielders it will swing away from the right-handed batsman, and if the seam is angled towards the leg side it will swing into the batsman," explained Sarfraz. "Reverse swing is totally opposite." Sarfraz passed the art to Imran, who achieved more success than his master but also confessed to ball-tampering by using a bottle top to roughen one side of the ball. Asked in a 1994 television interview whether he would have got 362 Test wickets had he not tampered with the ball, Imran replied: "Yes, it's a misconception that whoever scratches the ball can get wickets. "The whole Sussex team knew I could reverse swing and I would swing at one end while other bowlers could not swing it," said Imran, who played for the English county.
Sarfraz Nawaz "It is ridiculous to say reverse swing is cheating. You can achieve reverse swing without tampering with the ball and this has been proved in laboratories that reverse swing is a scientific phenomenon" #Cricket— Saj Sadiq (@Saj_PakPassion) March 31, 2018