Reverse swing

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For other uses, see Reverse swing (disambiguation).

In the sport of cricket, making the ball move in the air with the older ball is called reverse swing. It is also referred to as Irish swing.[1]

How is it done?[edit]

Reverse swing is used by fast bowlers and medium-pacers to trouble the batsmen with the late swing and get them out LBW or bowled. As the ball becomes older, the bowler tends to keep one side of the ball shining and the other, old. When the bowler bowls at a quick pace with this ball reverse swing is achieved. The ball moves in the direction of shine, due to its weight rather than in the opposite direction of shine as seen in normal inswing or outswing.

Most of the time the bowlers try to hide the shiny side so that batsman don't see the ball and can't determine which ball is going to reverse.

Reverse Swing Explanation[edit]

Reverse Swing is rather simple to explain as compared to conventional swing bowling. The rough side of the ball experiences more turbulence as compared to the shiny side. The shiny side has less air turbulence which mean less air resistance & hence the ball moves in that direction. This can be tried even your backyard. All you need is a tennis ball, a roll of electrical insulation tape, and a set of stumps to aim at. Cover one half of the ball with strips of tape and hold it down the center, with the taped side entirely to one side. For a toe-bruising yorker, keep the taped side towards leg and deliver the ball aiming for second slip. About two-thirds of the way the ball will curve like a banana and crash into the base of middle and leg. The faster you are the better, but you don't have to be very quick to create the effect. To bowl a menacing outswinger, keep the taped side facing off and aim for fine leg.

As opposed to this, the conventional swing is more mysterious as it is more dependent on angle of release & the wrist position at the point of release among other factors. [2]


  1. ^ Pervez, M (2001). A Dictionary of Cricket. Universities Press. p. 42. 
  2. ^ "Reverse swing or super swing?".