Sandeep Warrier has been one of those pacers in our set-up who is known for his knuckle balls and propensity to swing the ball both ways.
Warrier, who will be playing his third season with KKR this year, has come a long way in rediscovering himself as a bowler. T20s made him a thinking cricketer and helped him realise the importance of time management.
“As a bowler, you are bound to get hit in T20s. But no matter what, the comeback you give in the short time is what that matters. So, when I realized that, I started thinking more on the need to integrate what can be done, so that I can minimize the number of bad balls. I guess that's what gave me success,” observed the Kerala-based bowler who celebrated his 30th birthday recently.
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A poor domestic season (2017-18) is all that it took for Warrier to “strengthen his weaknesses and sharpen his strengths”. The results were visible for all of us when he plucked the Chris Gayle and KL Rahul in the second match of his debut season against RCB in 2019.
“Previously, I never used to bowl the knuckleball or the slow ones, so I started working on that and my yorkers after a bad Ranji season in 2017-18. I used to work a lot on my strengths. But after that season I used to work a lot on my weaknesses," Warrier pointed.
Warrier’s journey from a net bowler in RCB to playing for KKR has been a story worth telling. His zeal to learn from his colleagues and coaches has made him a mature bowler in a short time and considering the fact that he has the likes of Pat Cummins and Lockie Ferguson around, we have no doubts that he would add more to his experience kitty with invaluable bowling tips from the two of our foreign pacers.
“The day when KKR picked up Pat Cummins, I messaged Abhishek sir saying ‘I'm not going to let him go away from me. I'll be behind him throughout the two months, you just tell me how I do that’. He is one of the best bowlers you can have right now in the team. I would want to learn from him a lot, not only about T20 cricket or white ball cricket, but also Test cricket. I want to learn how he approaches the game or reacts to certain situations. It will be good to learn from both Lockie and Pat,” he added.