The off-break and "doosra": kinematic variations of elite and sub-elite bowlers in creating ball spin in cricket bowling
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This study sought to identify kinematic differences in finger-spin bowling actions required to generate variations in ball speed and spin between different playing groups. A 12-camera Vicon system recorded the off-spin bowling actions of six elite and 13 high-performance spin bowlers, and the "doosra" actions of four elite and two high-performance players. Forearm abduction and fixed elbow flexion in the bowling arm were higher for the elite players compared with the high-performance players. The elite bowlers when compared with the high-performance players delivered the off-break at a statistically significant higher velocity (75.1 and 67.1 km/hr respectively) and with a higher level of spin (26.7 and 22.2 rev/s respectively). Large effect sizes were seen between ball rotation, pelvic and shoulder alignment rotations in the transverse plane. Elbow extension was larger for elite bowlers over the period upper arm horizontal to ball release. Compared to the off-break, larger ranges of shoulder horizontal rotation, elbow and wrist extension were evident for the "doosra". Furthermore, the "doosra" was bowled with a significantly longer stride length and lower ball release height. Although not significantly different, moderate to high effect size differences were recorded for pelvis rotation, elbow extension and elbow rotation ranges of motion.