He bowls a heavy ball

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< 1 minute read

Magic accelerating ball just out of shotApparently Ravi Bopara is ‘quicker than he looks’. This is a moronic statement that’s often made about a bowler.

‘He skids onto you a bit’ is another. Very rarely does anyone actually mean that the ball is delivered at such a low angle that the ball skids rather than bounces. Mostly people just mean ‘he’s quicker than he looks’.

No-one’s quicker than they look. Everyone’s exactly as quick as they look.

‘He bowls a heavy ball’ is our favourite. This can either mean ‘he’s quicker than he looks’ or it can mean that even though the bowl clearly travels at 70mph, at the exact second it strikes the bat, it accelerates to 80mph and just ‘feels heavier’.


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  1. Another bloody hundred for Mahela Jayawardene – he must be getting bored of scoring runs now, surely?

  2. So, 149* over night, 100% chance of rain tomorrow.. I can’t believe that anything other than a draw, is going to happen in this test match.

    Today, was a proper yawn fest,,

  3. Three days left, a shedload of rain forecast…it’s still possible that the pitch will turn into something truly evil and, with the rain breaks affecting concentration, allow Murali to skittle England. Twice.

    I think Sanga’s form might have taken the pressure off Mahela, just a bit. Here’s hoping for a double-ton…

  4. I’m not sure ‘quicker than he looks’ is quite the empty meanignless phrase that it might initially appear. I remember when speed guns first became the norm, every single commentator was shocked to find that Craig White was a 90mph bowler. Same with Flintoff in fact. Maybe from a batsman’s perspective the phrase is redundant but from a distant viewpoint I think bowlers can bowl in a style that suggests a slower delivery than is actually the case.

  5. Well that’s true – particularly of those bowlers with a fast arm. Simon Jones only ever walked in, for example.

    However, more often than not commentators, as ex-players, describe the phenomenon from the batsman’s perspective. Batsmen are watching and playing the ball, not the bowling action, so it would appear to be a bit of a fantasy.

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