Indian pace bowler T Natarajan has revealed that he has full confidence in bowling impeccable yorkers and recalled that he had used a cross-seam yorker to get AB de Villiers out in the knock-out game. He also added that winning the Gabba Test in Australia was like clinching the World Cup.
Executing yorkers in pressure situations remains one of the most arduous tasks in cricket. Even if there is slight error in length, it can turn into a full-toss and be dispatched for a six. Tamil Nadu's T Natarajan, however, uses yorkers as his go-to-delivery whenever under pressure or in the death overs. He has literally made a name for himself with his mastery over the art of yorkers and bowled 71 such deliveries last season, the next most being 28.
One of the breakthrough moments for him in 2020 IPL was getting rid of AB de Villiers at death when he was well set and had crossed the fifty-run-mark. He revealed that the delivery that out-foxed the veteran was a cross-seam yorker, the grip of which he finds the most comfortable to bowl with.
"I bowled the yorker to de Villiers cross-seam. I bowled cross-seam yorkers against England too. When I try a yorker on the seam, there are some chances of missing my angle, so sometimes it comes out as a low full-toss. For me to bowl with the cross-seam grip is more comfortable," T Natarajan recalled in an interview with ESPN Cricinfo.
Natarajan also asserted that he has full confidence in bowling yorkers and backs himself to execute them, something which he did last season even on small grounds like Sharjah against power-hitters.
"I knew I would get hit if I erred with my length. Even if I miss it by inches, these batsmen are power-hitters who can hit it for a six. In a small ground like that, any batsman will be confident of hitting a six. Sometimes even if they mishit, the ball will go for six. I was just clear that I couldn't miss my length.
"If I tried something else and did not stick to my strength and gave runs [with the variation] too, it would affect my confidence. I believed 100% that I could execute the yorker. I have always believed in my strength and even if I make an error, I back myself to come back with the yorker. Even in the last ODI against England, Sam Curran hit me for a straight six first ball [in the 44th over], but the next five balls were perfect yorkers," he said.
There will be lot of pressure on Natarajan to do well this IPL now that he has done so well for India as well. His plans are clear and will be trying to nail the yorkers again and is ready to bowl with senior bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar for Sunrisers.
"I know I will have to do the job 100%. I will have to focus on not missing my length and have a clear plan for that scenario. If I miss my length, I am aware that I will be taken for runs. I have bowled under pressure in the past, so all of those experiences will help me this season. Bhuvi is back and in form, so he will share his thoughts when I'm under pressure. Our team has good communication and it's like a family. Even if I give runs, the team management backs me, so that gives me the confidence that I can come back," stated the left-arm pacer.
The 30-year-old further recalled the Gabba Test where India had won to clinch the series, and termed it a special win which felt like a World Cup conquest.
"It was great to make my Test debut with Washi. He played a superb innings under pressure and he played well in both innings to help us win the match. The experienced bowlers were injured and most of us were youngsters. The Gabba has a history and I've heard that it can be a challenging wicket against Australia. In the end we felt like we had won a World Cup."