It's easier to bowl with the new ball: Murali Kartik

Murali Karthik plays for Pune Warriors India in the Indian Premier League Getty Images

By CricketCountry Staff

Chennai: Oct 3, 2011

Left-arm Indian spinner Murali Kartik, who is playing for English Twenty20 champions Somerset in the ongoing Champions League T20, says that he finds bowling with the new ball a lot easier than with the old ball.

Kartik said, “I haven’t had to make too many changes to bowl with the new ball. Even when I’ve been on A-tours, I’ve bowled with the new ball. I like bowling with the new ball. Whenever I’m practicing, whether for the Ranji Trophy, IPL, or anything, I generally grab hold of a brand new ball and bowl. I’ve actually found it a lot easier bowling with the new ball.”

Talking about the challenges a spinner faces in the T20 format, where the batsmen are constantly looking to play big shots, Kartik said, “There are certain things you do as a bowler; you try to second guess the batsman and when it comes off it looks very nice, and the day when the batsman gets the better of you, you’re made to look very silly. On Indian grounds, especially when I saw the boundary here in Bangalore, I wanted to pad up and become a batsman. It is good as long as it is going well. Thankfully even in the IPL, I ve been one of the most economical bowlers.”

“I would have probably liked to get some more wickets along with that economy rate, but I’m not complaining. Especially in a Twenty20 game, my personal belief is that if five bowlers go for only 24 runs each, then you re only chasing 121 and I will take that any day.”

“In the Twenty20 format, the mindset is completely different. [The] margin of error is very minimal and you need to keep ahead of the batsman. That is why I believe in second-guessing or the art of bowling the right ball to the right batsman at the right time. The more you do it, the more successful you are or you minimize damage. The moment the batsman gets the better of you, you either get hit for a four or a six.”

Karthik plays for Pune Warriors India in the Indian Premier League, but since he is currently playing for an English side, his experience in India helps him a lot. “At the back of your mind you know you’re back to Indian conditions and you know what you need to do to make yourselves tick and to keep batsmen in check,” Kartik said.

“For three years I played for KKR (Kolkata Knight Riders) and suddenly I was playing for Pune Warriors India. In a professional cricketing world you end up playing for different teams. At the end of the day, it is your own reputation that is at stake. So you don’t think too much about playing for different teams. You attach yourself to a side and you want to do well. Along with your success, you want the team’s success as well,” he added.

Despite being vastly experienced, Karthik faces challenges from the other tweakers in the Somerset squad. “I’m the overseas player in the squad. Roelof van der Merwe has come in as the second overseas player and he played the England domestic T20s, and George Dockrell is one of the youngsters who has come in having done well in the World Cup. I have got pressure to keep up my reputation,” he expressed.

Kartik is confident that Somerset will be able to produce a good show in the remaining matches of the Champions League T20, “The best thing about Somerset has been the fact that they try and control what they can control and don’t focus on other factors. That is one of the reasons they’re so successful in English cricket and I don’t think they ve changed anything coming into this tournament. We play as a team; this team has been a very close knit unit and that is what has served us in good stead.”