Seam bowling is a bowling technique in cricket whereby the ball is deliberately bowled on to its seam, to cause a random deviation when the ball bounces. Practitioners are known as seam bowlers or seamers.
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Seam bowling is generally classed as a subtype of fast bowling, although the bowling speeds at which seam can be a factor include medium-pace bowling. Although there are specialist seamers that make deliberate use of off cutter and leg cutter at the expense of bowling slower than regular fast bowlers, most bowlers employ the seam to some effect and so the terms "seamer" and "fast bowler" are largely synonymous. This was far less the case in the past, even the recent past. Bowlers such as Tom Cartwright and Derek Shackleton bowled seamers at a pace in the low 70mphs and were very successful due to their mastery of control and variation. Cartwright did not retire until 1977.