Beyond the blockathon


As the Feroz Shah Kotla Test was progressing, It was a relief to see India will be winning the series. As the failures of the last year Australian tour are still wandering down the memory lane. This time around India dominated the Test Series but to Proteas credit they convincingly won the ODI and T20 series.

Bowling fast is an art & can be honed by individuals who are determined to learn the skills. The physical capacity to bowl fast requires a lot of athleticism, endurance & willingness. One can learn to clock up his bowling speed; but you cannot learn the willingness to be a fast bowler. It has to come from within as this willingness will dictate if you will become a successful or mediocre bowler.

On the fifth day a battle of the blockathon was surging. The South African’s were looking as solid as rock; they were trying to diminish any chances Indian had to seize the series 3-0 . Indians dominated every part of the game except for fast bowling.

Bowling fast is an art & can be honed by individuals who are determined to learn the skills. The physical capacity to bowl fast requires a lot of athleticism, endurance & willingness. One can learn to clock up his bowling speed; but you cannot learn the willingness to be a fast bowler.

 

 

When I was growing up; I had this fascination of bowling fast. I don’t know what motivated me to bowl fast; but it was the only thing I wanted to do in during a cricket match. To become a fast bowler you have to have the zeal to dominate your adversary. I remember a batsman who would hammer the fast bowlers so badly that every fast bowler refrained bowling while he was batting.

I had to improvise if I was to succeed against such a bully.

As the time would have it one day I was bowling against the notorious batsman. In my mind I wanted to do well and challenge his domination. The problem was how can I sideline him when he was scoring so many runs of my deliveries. While I was bowling, one thing I noticed was that the Batter will move in the crease towards the fine leg. That will expose his stumps to the bowler and bowler will try to hit the stump. But as he has moved in the crease; It will allow the batsman to open his arms and swing hard at the delivery.

I had to improvise if I was to succeed against such a bully. One thing I tried immediately was to align the bowl towards his body rather than trying to hit the stumps. When I bowled, Mr Bully will find moving towards the fine leg and the ball will follow him giving him no room to free his arms. This broke his spell of legendary batting. Now, he will try to block every ball, which will offer no room. Hoping that my next ball will be in his zone and he will capitalize on it. Even though I never-ever bowled a delivery in his strong zone. That’s when I saw a batsman so helpless. In the fourth test, South African batsmen followed the similar tactics and hoping that India will run out of time. They kept blocking each and every delivery they faced.

Even though I never-ever bowled a delivery in his strong zone. That’s when I saw a batsman so helpless. In the fourth test, South African batsmen followed the similar tactics and hoping that India will run out of time. They kept blocking each and every delivery they faced.

Kohli played his last trump card hoping to break the blockathon spell. He brought Umesh Yadav back in to attack & probably South African knew that Indian Spinners are the major forces they have to sabotage. This meant while Umesh was bowling they dropped their guards. Umesh using his ultra fast bowling speed ran through the defense of South African tail.

It was a worthy sight to see Umesh use the reverse swing, pace and intimidation to deliver the last nail in the South African coffin.

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