# Seam bowling

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Seam bowling is a bowling technique in cricket whereby the ball is deliberately bowled on to its seam, to cause a random deviation when the ball bounces. [1] [2] Practitioners are known as seam bowlers or seamers.

## Contents

Seam bowling is generally classed as a subtype of fast bowling, although the bowling speeds at which seam can be a factor include medium-pace bowling. Although there are specialist seamers that make deliberate use of off cutter and leg cutter at the expense of bowling slower than regular fast bowlers, most bowlers employ the seam to some effect and so the terms "seamer" and "fast bowler" are largely synonymous.

## Physics

A cricket ball is not a perfect sphere. The seam of the ball is the circular stitching which joins the two halves of the cricket ball. Hence, the seam joining the pieces of leather is circumferential and the stitching is noticeably raised. If the ball is bowled in such a way that the seam hits the pitch when it bounces, this irregularity can cause the ball to deviate sideways in its path. It may move in any direction, or just go straight. The batsman has to see how the ball moves after pitching to select his shot.

In order to achieve this effect, a seam bowler usually delivers the ball with the seam held upright, with rotation about a horizontal axis. [3] This keeps the seam aligned vertically as it travels towards the batter, making it likely that the ball will bounce with the seam on the pitch. Consistently hitting the seam is not as easy as it sounds. The seam has to be held upright between the index finger and the middle finger at the time of the delivery of the ball and, most importantly, the wrist has to be dead straight when the ball is delivered. The seam and wrist position of Australia's Glenn McGrath are arguably a perfect example.[ citation needed ]

The direction and degree of deviation from a straight path are dependent on the small-scale alignment of the seam and any irregularities in the pitch surface. This means that deviation caused by seam is chaotic and unpredictable.

However, it is also possible, by holding the seam at an angle and rolling the fingers over the surface of the ball, to produce a deliberate off cutter in which the ball veers away from the off side when it bounces on the pitch, or leg cutter in which it veers away from a right-handed batter. Former Australian bowler Dennis Lillee employed a leg cutter of this sort to considerable effect; however, deliveries of this kind will be slower than if the bowler simply bowls with the seam upright, hoping for movement one way or the other. Some bowlers deliberately use cutters more for their surprise slowness than the deviation off the pitch.

Often the deviation caused by seam is not large enough to cause a batter significant problems with playing the ball. Occasionally, however, the ball can deviate far enough to hit the edge of the cricket bat instead of the middle, producing a catch for nearby fielders. Swing bowling is a way of getting greater deviation, but is harder to control.

Australian fast-medium bowler Glenn McGrath has used his seaming ability to great effect in his career.[ citation needed ] The ball 'seams' at its best at the start of a team's innings, when the ball is new. A pitch which has cracks in it may assist a seam bowler as well. The genuine 'Yorker' may be used by seam bowlers, but bounces ('pitches') so close to the batter's feet that it has no opportunity to deviate from its original line.

Another good example of seam bowling technique are the fast bowlers Courtney Walsh and Curtly Ambrose. Close-up camera work of the following descriptions can be viewed for example at:. [4] Both Walsh and Ambrose used a forward wrist flick that imparted back-spin to the ball as it left the hand. However, significantly, their choice of finger position causes the ball to exhibit precession (similar to a gyroscope), with the seam remaining broadly upright but oscillating repeatedly between a 5 o'clock and 7 o'clock position (if viewed from the bottom of the seam). This effectively destroys seam induced swing (as the ball is constantly changing between outswing and inswing seam positions through the air). Thus, the ball travels straight onto the pitch (in theory allowing the bowler to be more accurate). However, when the seam of the ball contacts the pitch at the 5 o'clock position, the result is movement to the left (away to the right-handed batter), when the seam of the ball contacts the pitch at the 7 o'clock position, the result is movement to the right (in to the right-handed batter). It can be seen that only rarely would the ball be at the purely 6 o'clock position to continue completely straight after pitching. This aligns with the unpredictable nature of seam bowling, but appears primarily driven by the technique of the bowler, rather than irregularities in the pitch surface.[ citation needed ]

## Related Research Articles

Leg spin is a type of spin bowling in cricket. A leg spinner bowls right-arm with a wrist spin action. The leg spinner's normal delivery causes the ball to spin from right to left in the cricket pitch when the ball bounces. For a right-handed batsman, that is away from the leg side, and this is where it gets the name leg break, meaning it breaks away from the leg. The turn is mostly when the ball pitches.

Bowling, in cricket, is the action of propelling the ball toward the wicket defended by a batter. A player skilled at bowling is called a bowler; a bowler who is also a competent batter is known as an all-rounder. Bowling the ball is distinguished from throwing the ball by a strictly specified biomechanical definition, which restricts the angle of extension of the elbow. A single act of bowling the ball towards the batsman is called a ball or a delivery. Bowlers bowl deliveries in sets of six, called an over. Once a bowler has bowled an over, a teammate will bowl an over from the other end of the pitch. The Laws of Cricket govern how a ball must be bowled. If a ball is bowled illegally, an umpire will rule it a no-ball. If a ball is bowled too wide of the striker for the batsman to be able to play at it with a proper cricket shot, the bowler's end umpire will rule it a wide.

This is a general glossary of the terminology used in the sport of cricket. Where words in a sentence are also defined elsewhere in this article, they appear in italics. Certain aspects of cricket terminology are explained in more detail in cricket statistics and the naming of fielding positions is explained at fielding (cricket).

The fastball is the most common type of pitch thrown by pitchers in baseball and softball. "Power pitchers," such as former American major leaguers Nolan Ryan and Roger Clemens, rely on speed to prevent the ball from being hit, and have thrown fastballs at speeds of 95–105 miles per hour (153–169 km/h) (officially) and up to 108.1 miles per hour (174.0 km/h) (unofficially). Pitchers who throw more slowly can put movement on the ball, or throw it on the outside of home plate where batters can't easily reach it.

In baseball, a pitch is the act of throwing a baseball toward home plate to start a play. The term comes from the Knickerbocker Rules. Originally, the ball had to be literally "pitched" underhand, as with pitching horseshoes. Overhand throwing was not allowed until 1884.

Pace bowling is one of two main approaches to bowling in the sport of cricket, the other being spin bowling. Practitioners of pace bowling are usually known as fast bowlers, quicks, or pacemen. They can also be referred to as a seam bowler, a swing bowler or a fast bowler who can swing it to reflect the predominant characteristic of their deliveries. Strictly speaking, a pure swing bowler does not need to have a high degree of pace, though dedicated medium-pace swing bowlers are rarely seen at Test level these days.

Swing bowling is a technique used for bowling in the sport of cricket. Practitioners are known as swing bowlers. Swing bowling is generally classed as a subtype of fast bowling.

Spin bowling is a bowling technique in cricket, in which the ball is delivered slowly but with the potential to deviate sharply after bouncing, and the bowler is referred to as a spinner.

An arm ball is a type of delivery in cricket. It is a variation delivery bowled by an off spin bowler or slow left-arm orthodox bowler. It is the finger spin equivalent of a wrist spinner's slider or zooter.

An outswinger is a type of delivery in the sport of cricket. It is bowled by swing bowlers.

An inswinger is a type of delivery in the sport of cricket. It is bowled by swing bowlers.

A leg cutter is a type of delivery in the sport of cricket. It is bowled by fast bowlers.

An off cutter is a type of delivery in the game of cricket. It is bowled by fast bowlers.

In the sport of cricket there are two broad categories of bowlers: pace and spin. Pace bowlers rely mostly on the speed of the ball to dismiss batsmen, whereas spin bowlers rely on the rotation of the ball.

In the sport of cricket, a slower ball is a slower-than-usual delivery from a fast bowler. The bowler's intention is to deceive the batsman into playing too early so that he either misses the ball completely or hits it high up in the air to offer an easy catch. It is analogous to a changeup in baseball.

A delivery or ball in cricket is a single action of bowling a cricket ball toward the batsman.

Wrist spin is a type of bowling in the sport of cricket. It refers to the cricket technique and specific hand movements associated with imparting a particular direction of spin to the cricket ball. The other spinning technique, usually used to spin the ball in the opposite direction, is finger spin. Wrist spin is bowled by releasing the ball from the back of the hand, so that it passes over the little finger. Done by a right-handed bowler, this imparts an anticlockwise rotation to the ball, as seen from the bowler's perspective; a left-handed wrist spinner rotates the ball clockwise.

Finger spin is a type of bowling in the sport of cricket. It refers to the cricket technique and specific hand movements associated with imparting a particular direction of spin to the cricket ball. The other spinning technique, generally used to spin the ball in the opposite direction, is wrist spin. Although there are exceptions, finger spinners generally turn the ball less than wrist spinners. However, because the technique is simpler and easier to master, finger spinners tend to be more accurate.

In the sport of cricket, the bowling action is the set of movements that result in the bowler releasing the ball in the direction of the batsman.

In ball sports, topspin is a property of a ball that rotates forwards as it is moving. Topspin on a ball propelled through the air imparts a downward force that causes the ball to drop, due to its interaction with the air. Topspin is the opposite of backspin.

## References

1. Fuss, Franz Konstantin; Smith, Robert Masterton (2013). "Should the Finger Pressure be Well Distributed Across the Seam in Seam Bowling? A Problem of Precession and Torque". Procedia Engineering. 60: 453–458. doi:.
2. Fuss, Franz Konstantin; Smith, Robert Masterton (1 January 2014). "Accuracy Performance Parameters of Seam Bowling, Measured with a Smart Cricket Ball". Procedia Engineering. 72: 435–440. doi:.
3. "Swing and seam – the basic grip". BBC. 2005-09-06. Retrieved 2015-07-16.
4. "100th Test Match at Lords, England Vs West Indies in 2000, A thriller" . Retrieved 19 October 2013.