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Australia not ‘twiddling their thumbs’ while other teams achieve reverse swing

Macquarie Sports Radio Cricket commentator Tim Lane says the latest comments from Ian Chappell, Ian Healy and Mark Taylor on the extent of Australia’s ball tampering cannot be ignored.

“This is being driven by people whose view of things has to be respected, their instinct and their knowledge of how things have gone down over a period of time… is such that it cannot be ignored.” Lane tells Macquarie Sports Radio. 

The 12-month suspensions issued to Steve Smith and David Warner over the ball tampering scandal are moments from expiring but Lane says the idea that Steve Smith could once again captain Australia is problematic if suspicions still linger over whether the Cape Town incident was the first of its kind.

“If doubts continue to hover and surface, I think it would make it an extremely unsatisfactory outcome,” Lane said.

“It might be in [Smith’s] interest if the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth was to be flushed out.”

The motive behind ball tampering is simple: reverse swing. Getting the ball to reverse is a dark art and it is by no means guaranteed under natural conditions and Lane says it’s plausible that Australia explored less than legal methods of speeding up the process.

“I would imagine that Australia has been trying to find ways of making the ball reverse for almost as many years as the phenomenon has been applied so successfully by other countries.” Lane said.

“The fact is [reverse swing] is such a deadly form of bowling, it seems to have a lethal quality to it that can turn games and turn them suddenly,”

“It’s not as though our teams would have been sitting around twiddling their thumbs.”

Click PLAY to hear Tim Lane speak with Mark Allen and David Schwarz.