26 November 2007

Bent elbow blah

During the television coverage, we all saw Shoaib - and Bhajji too, let it be said - bend and unbend his elbow at the time of delivery. Superslomo had revealed it, and Rameez could not hide his mirth trying to deadpan.

I think this fixation with the bent elbow is frustrating, and frankly unfair to the bowler. I have not seen any scientific inquiry to what precisely a bowler gains from bending his arm. More spin for the spinner, more speed for the pacer, but in terms of an increment on the speed/spin he would have recieved anyway, we know nothing. Also, the cameras see everyone chuck, some perceptible to the naked eye, all perceptible to cameras if you could just slow them down enough. Even Zaheer and Kumble extend their arms at the point of delivery, just that we don't see it. This easy identification of 'unbent elbow' with a 'beautiful action' is somewhat simplistic. Bedi, he of the most beautiful action the game has known, unbeknownst to us, was also, what you may call, ahem, a 'chucker'.

When everything else in the game is going the batsman's way, I don't see why the bowler should not be allowed a little leeway - if research proves that it is indeed, little. Fifteen percent extension is what is aloowed now. Shoaib is well within the rules, and snide remarks will not bring back any un-bent utopia.

15 comments:

Sam said...

You dont mention anythig about the biggest chucker of world -- Muralidharan. Being unfair to Indian bowlers. Southie bias ?

John said...

Where does bias come in? I wrote about Shoaib because I happened to watch that on TV. Not all chucking posts need to involve The Amazing Murali.
Why am I being unfair to Indian bowlers? I thought I was being fair to all bowlers there.

Ottayan said...

John,

This 'Fifteen percent extension' is in itself a questionable law.

It was formulated to accomadate all these 'chuckers'.

Sam said...

Amazing Murali and Chucking Kumble. You seriously seem to have lost your brains and balls. There is no doubt that evil Murali chucks and chucks big time. Such a disgrace he still plays Test cricket.

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John said...

Thanks Ottayan, Sam,

1. I just happened to use Kumble as an example of a so-called unbent action. I am a huge fan of his, and since you insist too, Kumble will henceforth be referred to as the Remarkable One. Also, if I am not wrong Kumble is as South India as bisi bele bath, rava idli and Rajnikanth.

2. Murali may or may not chuck, but he proved it on video, bowling with and a metal brace that he does not need to chuck to get the results that he does.

3. Ottayan. Correct. The 'fifteen percent' rule accomodates the erstwhile 'chucker'. The fifteen-percent extension is now part of the game, and unless anyone can make a case for why it is detrimental, we should really move on without fixating on beautifully unbent elbows. C'mon. Be fair.

Scorpicity said...

When cricket was played in those days, you chucked if to the naked eye , it looked so... fifteen degrees is certainly an accommodation but this had to be done by a napping ICC because murali played for years before and nobody called him a chucker. Until he started coming dangerously close to warne. That is the Sri Lankan grouse on this issue. I however cannot get over the humour of Bedi calling Murali the world's best shotputter :).

John said...

Thank you Scorpicity.

Straight Point said...

whoever says murli is a chucker is seeing another game...you mean that he got so many wicket just for nothing the way he entices batsmen to come forward and get turn even on batta wickets is coz of he chucks???

stupendous

John said...

Thanks Straight Point. The problem is there is too much talk in the air. There has been no scientific inquiry into how much spin/speed can be imparted on to the ball by a 15% extension of the arm. In the absence of such know-how, nobody's opinion (Bedi included) is sacred.

Homer said...

Could we please prepend "SUPER STAR" every time we use Rajnikanth's name? Thank you.

Cheers

John said...

Apologies, Homer. Protocol shall be observed henceforth.

Soulberry said...

At least now we have 15 degrees to measure. 5 was a bit too subtle to do so. So that's a rule to begin with.

Dinnie said...

Pan, you are my hero for saying that.

If Bedi can give me 3-D evidence of Bhajji's chucking, I'll take he's a chucker.

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