Cricket swing theory does not hold water: Study

Fenil

ICC Board Member
TCPL Bad Boys
Joined
Jan 1, 2011
Widely held belief that moisture in the air during humid conditions helps make a cricket ball swing has been clean bowled in a scientific study. As per the study, no effect of moisture has been found on the ball.

Take a look at the article:

Cricket swing theory does not hold water: Study
 

sami ullah khan

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Hmm but the ball does tend to swing a bit more in humid condition and also when there is cloud cover, but you can't argue science.
 

angryangy

ICC Chairman
Joined
Oct 1, 2004
It's been proven before; as they said, they reviewed the literature. They're not the first to test this theory, but hopefully they are the last.

I tend to think a lot of it is in the pitch. Everyone knows about how abrasive conditions lead to reverse swing, but the opposite is true of conventional swing; there are some pitches that just don't look like they'll see a lot of swing. A good surface for swing bowling is not necessarily green, but is very gentle on the ball. It's been noted at the WACA in recent times that the ball leaves visible marks on the pitch; so it's reasonable to assume the ball is in newish condition for longer.

And while there was never a clear link as to how humidity ought to affect the ball, the water content of clay does change with humidity. A cricket pitch that contains moisture is unlikely to dry out quickly in humid air.

However, what ought to satisfy pundits is the theory they put forward about overcast conditions reducing turbulence. From this we can also predict that reverse swing, where the laminar airflow around the ball needs to be entirely turbulent, should occur more readily in hot, sunny conditions.
 

sifter132

Panel of Selectors
Joined
Oct 29, 2006
Location
NSW
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One thing I'd like to see is for Hawkeye/Eagleeye to be used to 'measure' swing on each delivery. At the moment we are relying on the waning eyes of Richie Benaud or David Lloyd or Ravi Shastri etc. to proclaim...'he's got the ball swinging'. Why not give us some data?? Then you can collect said data, chart it against the weather conditions of the day and you will be collecting real data rather than stuff from a lab.
 

angryangy

ICC Chairman
Joined
Oct 1, 2004
It probably is being measured, it's just not part of a public study. There's a lot of data that is worth real money to professionals.
 

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