Kevin Pietersen: The IPL death bowling has been dreadful
The Betway ambassador writes that, while commentating on big run chases is a thrill, the bowlers' failure to land consistent yorkers is a cause for concern.
Commentating on tight finishes is thrilling
I’m still loving it out in here in the UAE.
I’ve been busy commentating on the games, and what’s been so good about it is how close some of them have been.
I’ve been in the commentary box calling both of the Super Overs so far, and they really get you buzzing. You’re standing up instead of sitting down and the emotions really start to flow.
I’ve really enjoyed the pace of the tournament so far. It’s reinforced that the IPL is hands down the best T20 tournament in the world.
The batting has been impressive…
Some of the batting that we’ve seen has been outstanding. It’s been difficult to call games in the last few overs, in particular Rajasthan Royals’ chase against Kings XI Punjab, and RCB v Mumbai Indians.
Batsmen now are completely destroying any boundary on any ground.
Batting has improved an awful lot. I’ve spoken to former international players who played on the ground at Sharjah and they have told me that players used to get caught on the boundary all the time – it was a difficult one to clear.
What they’re seeing now are players who are completely destroying any boundary on any ground.
That’s because batsmen practise range-hitting, they practise hitting sixes, they are really fit guys, who do a lot of weight sessions, and their timing is really good.
That lends itself to very accomplished six-hitting.
…but the death bowling has been dreadful
The bowling has been way off the standard required. It’s been dreadful.
I’ve hardly seen anyone hit their yorkers perfectly. The best example of somebody doing it well was Kagiso Rabada’s Super Over for Delhi against Kings XI, when he knocked over two batsmen. He seems to be the best, alongside Jasprit Bumrah.
None of the other bowlers are going to it. They’re not even practising it by the looks of things.
Lasith Malinga, who was the greatest yorker bowler, used to practise before a game. All he would do was bowl yorkers, and repetition trains the brain.
There are a lot of theories going around about slower balls and slower-ball bouncers so batsmen can only hit one side of the ground, and so on.
You can vary it up a little bit, but I think a lot more time should be spent practising the perfect yorker.
The best example was during Rahul Tewatia’s innings for Rajasthan against KXIP last week.
Tewatia can clearly bat – his captain Steve smith and coach Andrew McDonald had seen him play some big shots in practise – but he got off to a very sticky start.
One big shot can change everything for a batsman, but the bowling to him was dreadful. There were balls on his hip, short balls and there were hardly any yorkers. There was no discipline with the ball.
The death bowling has been a cause for concern for a lot of teams.
Shubman Gill should be KKR captain
He should be the captain of KKR - @RealShubmanGill.— Kevin Pietersen🦏 (@KP24) September 26, 2020
I wrote before the tournament how excited I was to see Shubman Gill bat in this IPL, and I haven’t been disappointed.
He’s batted brilliantly – scoring 70* against Sunrisers Hyderabad before getting his team off to another great start against Rajasthan most recently.
I think he should be the captain of Kolkata Knight Riders as well.
He could work alongside Eoin Morgan, who would be a great tutor, and could replicate the work that Shreyas Iyer is doing with the Delhi Capitals.
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