Waqar Younis says legalising ball-tampering isn’t possible

Former Pakistan’s captain Waqar Younis feels that it isn’t possible to legalize ball-tampering © Getty Images

Oct 27, 2013

Legendary Pakistan fast bowl Waqar Younis on Sunday told that legalising ball-tampering is impossible. He also called for rules to be followed on a uniform basis to punish cricketers involved in ball-tampering.

South African stellar middle-order batsman, Faf du Plessis was fined only 50% of his match fees for tampering the ball in the second Test at Dubai which South Africa won by an innings and 92 runs on Saturday.

Younis commenting on the conundrum of ball-tampering issue said, “If you legalize ball-tampering … there will be a lot of swing so I don’t see legalizing tampering is possible.” Younis was quoted as saying by Times of India.

Younis who got 373 wickets in 87 Test matches and 416 wickets in 262 One-Day Internationals (ODI) was incidentally the first cricketer to get suspended for a tampering with the ball in 2000.

He also forged a fearsome pace combination with Wasim Akram and was well-known for delivering toe-crushing yorkers.

In recent times, all time greats like Pakistan’s Imran Khan as well as New Zealand’s Richard Hadlee have opined that tampering of the ball should be made legal.

Younis though, doesn’t share the same view.

“How can you legalize tampering?” Younis said. “I think Richard Hadlee, Allan Donald and Imran Khan also said that, but I don’t know how it can be done.”

In fact, in Pakistan, a lot of former international cricketers and the incumbent chief of Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), Najam Sethi have raised questions related to David Boon letting off du Plessis with a mere fine

Younis too concurs with others that du Plessis got away rather lightly considering the severity of the offence.

“I think he got away with it, considering the severity of the offence,” he told.

“Had it been a sub-continent player he would have been punished harshly, so there should be uniformity in punishment.”

Younis reckoned that as cricket has already been rocked by match-fixing and spot-fixing issues. Legalizing of ball tampering could even result in International Cricket Council being heavily scrutinised.

Younis believes, “I think that [legalising tampering] will cause more problems because already there is lack of sportsmanship in the game and the ICC will be under one more problem.”  

Younis was of the view that batsmen are already facing a tough challenge of facing up to good bowling attacks on wickets with pace and bounce in Australia and South Africa. He said, if and when ball-tampering is legalized, batsmen will face severe hurdles.

Younis said, “I’m sure batsmen will start shouting in two months if you legalize ball-tampering because the ball will do a lot.”  

Younis believes that difference in balls being used in different countries in international cricket is also an obstacle that comes in the way of legalizing ball-tampering.

“There are ten teams which play international matches they use three to four types of different balls which will behave differently if tampered,” Younis told.

“The pitches also differ, so it cannot be uniform.”