MATCHES

KKR’s comeback man - Sunil Narine

Mystery spinner on the work put in behind his remodelled action and the urge to get consistent

Kolkata 22 May 2016
Finally! Those revs on the white ball, that vicious turn, a bamboozle and the match-winner in Sunil Narine were all back on the floor as Kolkata Knight Riders booked their place in the VIVO IPL 2016 Playoffs owing to a stellar bowling display from Narine and company. After Yusuf Pathan and Manish Pandey had managed to get KKR out from troubled waters, it was up to KKR’s bowling line-up to do the needful and that they did in kind.

Narine took centre stage with a magnificent three wicket haul that saw shades of Narine of the past. The Trinidadian, who is making a comeback of sorts after he was banned from bowling five months ago, was happy with the way things were slowly getting back on track. After all, it wasn’t easy to get back to prime with renewed home and a renewed action, agreed Narine. “If a bowler bowls with one action for 26 years then it is difficult to get up one day and just change your action,” he said speaking to
iplt20.com. “Even though you remodel your action, you still have to keep working on it to maintain your effectiveness with the new action. You have to make sure that you are comfortable with your new action. That comes with a lot of practice and work that you put in. Once you have done that, you hope that the best is in store. You just have to believe in yourself and the rest of it will take care of itself.” 
 
Further, Narine gets into details of the work put in by him to get his action right. “It is a difficult process, it is not easy. I worked with a couple of coaches back home - David Furlonge and Kelvin Williams, and Carl Crowe from England. I also got enough support from everyone which made my comeback a lot easier. I just did the drills that my bowling coaches asked me to, I heard them out and continued doing it over and over again. There was nothing to do with specific exercises to get my action right. It was just about getting my body motions proper, being able to make everything flow in one motion. I believe it has made it a lot better.”

Not many bowlers who have been asked to remodel their action have been successful in having a fruitful cricketing career thereafter. Narine though, was of the opinion that though the process was draining, the very drive to get back on the field was enough to make him work harder. “It is at times physically and mentally draining, but at the end of the day I love the game and this is what I want to do. Whatever it takes to get back on the park, I am willing to do. I am still learning from each game I play. I am putting all the effort to make sure my action stays the same. It is still in the process of making things better and hopefully it only gets better with every game.”

Narine believes he will get better with every game. Against the Sunrisers Hyderabad was one such example. Narine was pumped up after his brilliant bowling display but didn’t take too much credit for the team’s win. “It is great to be back with a decent performance. I think it was a match-winning performance by everyone and not just me. Everyone gave it their all given the situation of the game. It was a wonderful team performance. We delivered the best that we could on the day.”

He also had some special words for his bowling partner Kuldeep Yadav, who finished with figures of 2/28, picking up the crucial wickets of Shikhar Dhawan and Kane Williamson. “It wasn’t that tough a pitch to bowl on. Saying that, we did a tremendous job with the ball. I got good assistance from Kuldeep Yadav as well. He is a young spinner to look out for, who has a lot of talent. He is willing to work hard and go places. He is going to do well in the future. We just had to keep it as tight as possible and do what the team required of you. Whichever spinner is on top on that day, they take full responsibility of being the bowler the captain can rely on. It is a lot of boost as a team after such a win. We have to continue with this ahead.”

Going ahead, Narine hoped for KKR to carry the winning momentum into the playoffs and on a personal front become more consistent with his bowling. “It is always good to make the playoffs. Hopefully we can take this winning momentum forward. It is good to get a good performance but I would like to be a bit more consistent. Hopefully the time is here. I will still continue working hard whether it works next game or not. I will work as hard as possible.”                  
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