'It will stay with me throughout my career' - Harshal Patel opens up on the career-defining advice he received from AB de Villiers

‘It will stay with me throughout my career’ – Harshal Patel opens up on the career-defining advice he received from AB de Villiers

In the second T20I against New Zealand, Harshal Patel scalped 2 wickets, giving away 25 runs in his 4-over quota.

Harshal Patel
Harshal Patel. (Photo Source: Disney+Hotstar)

Harshal Patel produced a good performance with the ball in his debut match for the Indian side on 19th November 2021. In the second T20I against New Zealand, the right arm pacer scalped 2 wickets, giving away 25 runs in his 4-over quota.

And, now, Patel has revealed that South African legend AB de Villiers had a massive impact on his career. Patel added that he went to de Villiers and asked him how he could reduce the ‘big overs’, where he leaks around 15 to 20 runs an over.

And, de Villiers had told Patel that when a batsman hits a good delivery bowled by him for a boundary, he should not change the way he bowls. AB de Villiers had also told Patel that when a good delivery is hit for a boundary, the batsman will be expecting the bowler to change his tactics. Patel added that this advice from de Villiers will stay with him throughout his career.

“AB has had a massive impact on my career. I have always been a silent observer of him. Recently when we were starting our campaign in the UAE I asked him, ‘How do I reduce my big overs? I have bowled 12-15 even 20-run overs in the IPL so how should I reduce those?’ So he told me, ‘When a batsman hits your good delivery, you shouldn’t change that.

You should constantly force the batsman to hit your good deliveries only. If you get hit once on a good delivery then if you change it, the batsman is already expecting that.’ That is something that stayed with me throughout the second leg of IPL and will stay with me throughout my career,” said Patel after winning the Player of the Match award.

I use angles in my bowling to good effect: Harshal Patel

Harshal Patel also added that angles are a huge part of the way he bowls. Patel also explained how creating angles can make things difficult for the batsman. The pacer concluded by stating that creating angles while bowling is another skill that he will add to his repertoire.

“Angles are a big part of my bowling because, to give an example, if you bowl a fourth-stump line from close to the stumps, it remains a fourth-stump line but if you bowl from the corner of the crease it still comes in for the batter and sort of becomes difficult to hit through the offside.

So angles have always been a big part of my game and I use them to good effect. I think it’s another thing that I can add to my repertoire without trying to do too many different things,” concluded Harshal Patel.