‘The more I bowled spin, the more I looked at him’ – Sunil Narine says he tried to emulate Muttiah Muralitharan in early days
West Indies didn't have spinners who were playing consistently at the time; they would always play one-off games, where fast bowlers would dominate," the spinner said.
Updated - Aug 1, 2022 12:29 pm
Sunil Narine is arguably one of the most prominent spinners to represent the West Indies in the international arena. Not only just international cricket, but Narine has also made a name for himself across several franchise-based leagues being played all over the world.
The right-arm spinner has now opened up about how he used to follow Sri Lanka’s legendary spinner Muttiah Muralitharan’s bowling and tried to add variations to his bowling during his early days. Often termed as a mystery spinner, Narine has bamboozled several prominent batting line-ups over the years and continues to be one of the toughest spinners to play against.
He had the ball going both ways: Narine on Muralitharan
“In the Caribbean it was tough. The more I bowled spin, the more I looked to Muthiah Muralitharan – he had the ball going both ways. But in the beginning, it was tough. West Indies didn’t have spinners who were playing consistently at the time; they would always play one-off games, where fast bowlers would dominate,” the spinner said in the most recent edition of the Cricket Monthly.
Narine also emphasized that batting was, and still is, his favorite aspect of the game. It must be noted that Narine has made an image of himself as being an excellent pinch-hitter and has also played several entertaining knocks with the bat.
“To be honest, batting was and still is, my favorite aspect of the game. Then the first game I played, I picked up 14 wickets in a four-day game. In Trinidad, people knew I could bat, but this was when I became Narine the bowler. That’s where I became a so-called ”mystery” bowler,” he added.
Talking about Narine’s career, the senior spinner made his first-class debut in 2009 and soon was named in the West Indies squad to make his debut against India in 2011. Narine has also remained a vital player for his Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and has given them many match-winning performances with both bat and ball since joining the franchise back in 2012.