May 26, 2012

The mysterious Mr Narine

Bought as a rookie for an eye-popping fee to play in the IPL, Sunil Narine and his knuckle ball have delivered for the Kolkata Knight Riders. Next up? Watch out, Test cricket
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Kieron Pollard remembers the moment clearly. Sitting at his laptop in the middle of the night in Barbados, he was following the IPL player auction in Bangalore. "When his name came up and the price started to rise, I think I was more excited than him. He is one of the guys I have seen come through the ranks in Trindad & Tobago and he has been on the fringes for a long while, and then to get this opportunity to come to the IPL and not only come but come at such a price was very nice," Pollard says of fellow Trinidadian Sunil Narine, the offspinner.

Bidding on Narine started at the base price of $50,000. Two hours into it, the Kolkata Knight Riders and Pollard's Mumbai Indians were in a tug of war. Eventually the Knight Riders had him for $700,000. Narine was in Bridgetown at the time, playing in a match against Combined Campuses and Colleges, which he near-singlehandedly won for T&T with a 13-wicket match haul. He was returning to the team hotel in the early hours of the morning after a liming session with a few Trinidad players, including Dwayne Bravo, who was being fed news of the auction by New Zealand allrounder Scott Styris on the phone. "It was four or five in the morning," Narine remembers with a smile. "Bravo asked me, 'You know you have been bought in the IPL?' I asked for how much. He said $700,000. I was like, 'Oh shit, no way, man,'"

Over the last month Narine has been delivering on that investment: he is the IPL's mystery man, whose hands, seam and "knuckle ball" quality batsmen are finding impossible to read. Going into Sunday's final, Narine has 24 wickets, one shy of tournament leader Morne Morkel, though Narine's wickets have come far cheaper: his economy rate of 5.20 is the best across all IPL seasons among bowlers who have bowled a minimum of 30 overs. Even Muttiah Muralitharan, who played for the Royal Challengers Bangalore this season, has an overall tournament economy rate of 6.48. That Narine is difficult to get away is also indicated by the fact that less than 40% of the runs he has conceded have come through boundaries (112). Compare that with Amit Mishra and Piyush Chawla, at least half of whose runs have come in boundaries.

Narine is one of the few instances in IPL history where a big buy has provided value for money in the first season. Joy Bhattacharjya, the Knight Riders' team director, says that putting big money on Narine was not a risk. The team's post-mortem at the end of the 2011 season highlighted the need for a strike bowler who could also be economical bowling at the death. "Narine has fulfilled the need on both fronts," Bhattacharjya says. The Knight Riders play their first IPL final this weekend and Bhattacharjya agrees that Narine has been instrumental in them having gone so far.

"It is a little tough knowing that you have been bought for so much," Narine says. "There is a little bit of pressure. Knowing that, you still have to go out and do your best. It is not like you just got the money and didn't perform. Hopefully I can continue performing."

From out of Trinidad
Narine comes from a small family and lives with his parents and older sister in Arima, Trinidad. He surprised Sunil Gavaskar recently when he revealed in a post-match chat that his father, Shadeed, a big fan of the Indian batting legend, had named his son after him.

It was Shadeed who sparked his son's interest in sport, taking him to the Queens Park Savannah every evening. Narine is proud he has been loyal to his first club, Queens Park Oval. "I started at age seven and I'm still there at age 23."

Family support helped Narine keep faith with cricket when his teachers at school were unhappy he was getting increasingly distracted by the sport. "Some of the teachers said, 'You better concentrate on your books, because one in a million make it big.'" But his father did not let his young son be discouraged. "He said, 'Don't worry. What's for you is for you and will happen.' So I just continued playing cricket and here I am now," Narine says.

Narine is a Roman Catholic, but says he is not religious, and though superstitious by his own admission, he is reluctant to say what rituals he observes. Apart from his now-famous mohawk, he has a tattoo on his arm and wears a couple of bands on his wrists, including a metal one with his first name inscribed on it. His one kit-bag essential is sunglasses: "I have eight shades, all different colours. Just love them," he says.

"When you bowl with a scrambled seam, it is very difficult to pick the actual rotation. If the batsmen aren't getting good visual clues out of the hand, then they are reduced to playing the ball off the pitch, which has obvious limitations in terms of time to play shots"
Former Australia bowler Geoff Lawson on Narine's action

He first came to notice during the Under-19 World Cup in Sri Lanka in 2005, his first games for West Indies. He looks at that tournament as a stepping stone, because he then graduated to play for the senior side at his club. "Before that I used to struggle to make the second team at Queen's Park." Bernard Julien, Sammy Guillen and Roland Sampath were among the coaches who played a significant role in Narine's progress at various stages of his career.

In 2011, Narine had to travel to Australia to make minor tweaks to his bowling action. Some regional umpires had raised doubts about his bowling during the Caribbean Twenty20 tournament and told the T&T manager and coach remedial action needed to be taken. The government of Trinidad funded the trip. It was a critical time, just before the T&T side was picked for the Champions League Twenty20. "If I failed I would have to start all over again," Narine says. "It was a lot of pressure." In Australia he learnt to bowl a little more side-on. "Little, little adjustments" were suggested without changing his action entirely, which worked well.

Though West Indies as a whole may not quite be a haven for spin, T&T does not lack for slow bowlers. Narine was pitted against the likes of Dave Mohammed, Samuel Badree, Amit Jaggernauth, Sherwin Ganga and Imran Khan. It helped, then, that the first time he was selected for a trials game meant to pick the Trinidad team, in 2008, he took all ten wickets, including that of West Indies opener Lendl Simmons. It immediately catapulted him over the competition. Narine says he has learned from the rest. "Probably their motivation and love for cricket and the pride they take in representing the country. They are quite serious about their game, and attitude-wise they are brilliant," he says.

The knuckle ball
As a youngster, Narine played "windball" cricket with a soft ball, where the bowler squeezes the ball during delivery to make it spin. Shadeed had watched the Sri Lanka offspinner Ajantha Mendis bowl his "carrom" ball, and urged his son to try the knuckle grip. So did Darren Bravo. "I was practising in the nets and then one of my friends, Marlon, and small Bravo told me why did I not try it in club matches," Narine says.

He found it hard initially - it's one thing squeezing a soft ball and another propelling a hard cricket ball across 22 yards - but says he has improved with time and practice.

The knuckle-ball grip involves bending the forefinger and middle finger and using them to propel the ball forwards. What is distinct about Narine's away-going delivery, as opposed to a carrom ball bowled by someone like, say, R Ashwin, is that the Indian uses one finger to push the ball away while Narine uses two.

Narine has used his knuckle ball sparingly, and says his stock ball will always be the offbreak, which he delivers with more side spin. He also has the topspinner, and a faster ball, which he uses varyingly to keep batsmen in check.

The first glimpse the world at large got of Narine's repertoire was in T&T's crucial match against the Chennai Super Kings in the 2011 Champions League Twenty20, when he dismissed Murali Vijay, Suresh Raina and MS Dhoni - the last two caught and bowled. "When I came on, they were under pressure, so I was happy to bowl," he remembers. "Against Dhoni, I know he was looking to hit me for a six. So I mixed my pace and got him." He rates the performance as one of his best spells to date. "It was my first real exposure to that level of cricket."

Former England batsman Owais Shah, who moves about a lot in his crease, is the kind of player Narine finds difficult to bowl at. At Eden Gardens in April, Shah came in to bat for the Rajasthan Royals against KKR after a solid half-century against Mumbai Indians a couple of days before. "He is pretty hard to bowl at because he is not stable at the crease," Narine says. His game plan was to not give Shah any room, and to bowl as close to the wicket as possible. It worked and Shah was stumped when he charged down against one that left him.

Two days later Narine took a five-for against Kings XI Punjab at the same ground, including Adam Gilchrist and Shaun Marsh in quick succession. Marsh, one of the best Twenty20 batsmen around, was bowled by a knuckle ball that came in through the gate.

Narine's favourite wicket of the season so far, though, has been that of Sachin Tendulkar - who was bowled by a sharp offbreak that cramped him for room as he tried to cut it.

Hungry for the big game
Narine may have bowled only 81.5 overs in international cricket but he has left a mark there as well. As the Australians, the No. 1 ODI team in the world, found out recently, in particular Matthew Wade, who Narine got three times in 20 deliveries for just two runs in the series in the Caribbean.

Narine's strength is his consistency, Pollard points out. "The way he analyses situations and batsmen, and if you watched his pitch map in the Australia series, the percentage in one area was very good." Pollard thinks Narine is learning quickly to adapt, knowing that teams will work him out in international cricket over a period of time. "He will try to keep one step ahead and he will work hard as he is a humble human being."

Narine for his part says he is still learning to bowl under pressure. "Two things can happen: you can bowl good and get a better name for yourself. Or you can go there and get smashed and then you have to work on something. So I take it up as a challenge each time I go in to bowl to be consistent," he says.

Geoff Lawson, the former Australia fast bowler, who was in the West Indies as a television commentator for the series, thinks if Narine had played in the Test series, West Indies might have won it - if only because the pitches for the Tests had more bounce. "He does put a lot of work on his offspinner, which makes it effective - he doesn't just roll it out, so batsmen have to be looking to play for significant deviation off the pitch," Lawson says. The other thing about Narine that struck Lawson was that he bowls with a scrambled seam. "When you bowl both the offspinner and the topspinner and doosra with a scrambled seam, it is very difficult to pick the actual rotation. If the batsmen aren't getting good visual clues out of the hand, then they are reduced to playing the ball off the pitch, which has obvious limitations in terms of time to play shots."

Narine says he is ready and "hungry" to play Test cricket, and reckons his time is nearing fast. "Hopefully I will be fully prepared and fully ready for it," he says.

He is 24 today. The biggest challenge ahead, he reckons, is to keep his feet on the ground. "I want to learn to adapt to not being successful - how to keep a mindset when things are not going well for me. In cricket there are less ups than downs, so I want to learn to bounce back from a bad over, a bad innings, bad match."

Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Rally_Windies on May 28, 2012, 14:18 GMT

    commitment to country?

    if your country wants nothing to do with you and you go play in a foreign league what is wrong with that?

    the only problem is that Narine is probably the best offspinner in the world and his sucess makes the Selectors and Officials that wanted nothing to do with him look like idiots...

    Narine nearly did not even play 1st class cricket for T&T ...

    so rash is the Caribbean with nepotism, T&T's captain's brother was picked in front of Narine and Dave Mohommed...

    Imagine, it was Dave Mohommed who eventually got dropped for Narine to play for T&T .....yes Dave Mohommed..

    Between Samuel Bardee who is the best 20/20 legspinner in the world and Rampaul and Mohommed ... they dropped Mohommed cuz the Captain's bro just HAD to play ....

    & worse than that, if Bravo and Pollard were available.. there is no way in hell Narine would have bowled in the 2011 Champions league .....

  • legend_963 on May 28, 2012, 0:38 GMT

    @stormy16 if u ever met the wicb u would understand why

  • mngc1 on May 27, 2012, 14:33 GMT

    drjustinrobert I repeat that Shakib may deserve his pick but this comparison that he is the best of every discipline is what is driving me up a wall.For this tournament Gayle averaged 61 at SR of 160.74. Shakib's average is 13.36 at SR 119.4. By what stretch of the imagination does he bat like Gayle? His bowling economy rate of 6.29 and SR 14.7 is not bad. He may deserve his spot as a bowler but not at the EXPENSE of Narine who has an economy rate of 5.2 and SR 13.75 (unless you are backing CSK). Bravo's batting figures are better Shakib, bowling not as good but his fielding, charisma and team spirit puts him above Shakib as the best all rounder in this series.

  • stormy16 on May 27, 2012, 14:11 GMT

    I dont understand why this guy isnt playing in the English test series but in the IPL he has been nothing short of a sensation.

  • Vinnyvinner on May 27, 2012, 13:57 GMT

    @MSDhoni_Fan

    Yeah True always country comes first but if the country failed to recognise your potential first then ? That's what happened in Narine's case, WICB failed to contract him but KKR did, so he have to acknowledge KKR contract, So there is nothing wrong Narine has done.

  • praveen4honestremark on May 27, 2012, 9:26 GMT

    Narine is playable, only thing is that in cricket even in IPLT20 you should know to attack as well as defend, if you can do it well, you can get 8 runs per over in Narine's over. Today Chennai super kings team will do it.

  • Erebus26 on May 27, 2012, 8:58 GMT

    Narine seems a good prospect and as long as he keeps his feet on the ground and works hard then he should have long career in international cricket. I hope maybe he will appear more times for the Windies though...

  • StevieS on May 27, 2012, 8:25 GMT

    What I like about him is not just that he is hard to pick but also how close to the wicket he gets and how high his release is. Bowling wicket to wicket combined with bounce combined with not being able to read him = wickets galore. Exciting times for cricket fans.

  • maddy20 on May 27, 2012, 8:19 GMT

    Regardless of what Shakib's fans say, he has picked 7 wickets with an economy rate of 8.4 and made only one significant contribution with the bat. As over rated as he is, Kolkota should include him in the playing IX coz the Chennai groundsmen are gonna prepare a rank turner to tilt the scales in favor of the home team. Lets hope he does well today!

  • drjustinrobert on May 27, 2012, 7:17 GMT

    @mngc: Please understand and accept that Shahid is the best all-rounder. He is the best match winner for KKR. Sunil Narine can bowl a bit but he is not an all-rounder. Shahib can bat like Gayle and Bowl like Sunil Narine and field like Jonty Rhodes. He is 3-in-1 the best in business for T20. I don't care for how much Shahid is paid now or will be bought next time in IPL, but as some one who is not from Bangladesh, I can tell he is the unsung hero of KKR or for that matter even Bangladesh. He deserves much more than what he has been rewarded so far. His contributions to the success of KKR is of immense value.

  • Rally_Windies on May 28, 2012, 14:18 GMT

    commitment to country?

    if your country wants nothing to do with you and you go play in a foreign league what is wrong with that?

    the only problem is that Narine is probably the best offspinner in the world and his sucess makes the Selectors and Officials that wanted nothing to do with him look like idiots...

    Narine nearly did not even play 1st class cricket for T&T ...

    so rash is the Caribbean with nepotism, T&T's captain's brother was picked in front of Narine and Dave Mohommed...

    Imagine, it was Dave Mohommed who eventually got dropped for Narine to play for T&T .....yes Dave Mohommed..

    Between Samuel Bardee who is the best 20/20 legspinner in the world and Rampaul and Mohommed ... they dropped Mohommed cuz the Captain's bro just HAD to play ....

    & worse than that, if Bravo and Pollard were available.. there is no way in hell Narine would have bowled in the 2011 Champions league .....

  • legend_963 on May 28, 2012, 0:38 GMT

    @stormy16 if u ever met the wicb u would understand why

  • mngc1 on May 27, 2012, 14:33 GMT

    drjustinrobert I repeat that Shakib may deserve his pick but this comparison that he is the best of every discipline is what is driving me up a wall.For this tournament Gayle averaged 61 at SR of 160.74. Shakib's average is 13.36 at SR 119.4. By what stretch of the imagination does he bat like Gayle? His bowling economy rate of 6.29 and SR 14.7 is not bad. He may deserve his spot as a bowler but not at the EXPENSE of Narine who has an economy rate of 5.2 and SR 13.75 (unless you are backing CSK). Bravo's batting figures are better Shakib, bowling not as good but his fielding, charisma and team spirit puts him above Shakib as the best all rounder in this series.

  • stormy16 on May 27, 2012, 14:11 GMT

    I dont understand why this guy isnt playing in the English test series but in the IPL he has been nothing short of a sensation.

  • Vinnyvinner on May 27, 2012, 13:57 GMT

    @MSDhoni_Fan

    Yeah True always country comes first but if the country failed to recognise your potential first then ? That's what happened in Narine's case, WICB failed to contract him but KKR did, so he have to acknowledge KKR contract, So there is nothing wrong Narine has done.

  • praveen4honestremark on May 27, 2012, 9:26 GMT

    Narine is playable, only thing is that in cricket even in IPLT20 you should know to attack as well as defend, if you can do it well, you can get 8 runs per over in Narine's over. Today Chennai super kings team will do it.

  • Erebus26 on May 27, 2012, 8:58 GMT

    Narine seems a good prospect and as long as he keeps his feet on the ground and works hard then he should have long career in international cricket. I hope maybe he will appear more times for the Windies though...

  • StevieS on May 27, 2012, 8:25 GMT

    What I like about him is not just that he is hard to pick but also how close to the wicket he gets and how high his release is. Bowling wicket to wicket combined with bounce combined with not being able to read him = wickets galore. Exciting times for cricket fans.

  • maddy20 on May 27, 2012, 8:19 GMT

    Regardless of what Shakib's fans say, he has picked 7 wickets with an economy rate of 8.4 and made only one significant contribution with the bat. As over rated as he is, Kolkota should include him in the playing IX coz the Chennai groundsmen are gonna prepare a rank turner to tilt the scales in favor of the home team. Lets hope he does well today!

  • drjustinrobert on May 27, 2012, 7:17 GMT

    @mngc: Please understand and accept that Shahid is the best all-rounder. He is the best match winner for KKR. Sunil Narine can bowl a bit but he is not an all-rounder. Shahib can bat like Gayle and Bowl like Sunil Narine and field like Jonty Rhodes. He is 3-in-1 the best in business for T20. I don't care for how much Shahid is paid now or will be bought next time in IPL, but as some one who is not from Bangladesh, I can tell he is the unsung hero of KKR or for that matter even Bangladesh. He deserves much more than what he has been rewarded so far. His contributions to the success of KKR is of immense value.

  • g.narsimha on May 27, 2012, 6:04 GMT

    KIWIROCKER The cricketing world knows who are the best players of spin that is a settled issue Now come to the point if one has to be great , requires to perforfom in all places in all conditions ASHWIN even though relativly new failed in ENG, AUS, but won a SERIES FOR IND in WI . AJMAL ON THE OTHER HAND TALKED very HIGHLY By u people as if he is the best ever , failed in AUS, ENG, EVEN IN WI , in AUS his average 66, in ENG more THAN 50, failed in WI TO WIN A SERIES AGAINST A WEAK WI, On friendly wickets in ASIA bowling to POMS is not a big deal , the poms who could not win in india for decades were made to DANCE to the tunes of BHAJJEE, MANINDER,Even our youngesters thrashed poms 5-0 in ODIS IN IND, Even RANGANNA HERATH spun SL to VICTORY in SA PL CAN U ENLIGHTEN ME WHERE DOES U R GREAT AJMAL WON A MATCH for u out side ASIA & against IND of his own, BIG ZERO. every body entitaled to think of their playrs as they like but dont insult others pl countr me with stats.

  • Sinhaya on May 27, 2012, 3:52 GMT

    @Nirad_N, why are you saying Murali is not good against India?? Forgot how he took 7 for 30 in Sharjah?? Also, Murali has 105 test wickets against India. So please dont play down the greatest off spinner Muralitharan. Even Kumble and Harbhajan have a tremendous respect towards Murali.

  • Sinhaya on May 27, 2012, 3:47 GMT

    Come on Narine! Please make yourself available to play the 3rd test against England! Narine you are simply the best spinner in the world today. Murali was not as great at the beginning. You are even better than Ajmal at this point of time! All the best Narine and hope you rip through the NZ batsmen in the home test series.

  • Sandeep.M.J.D on May 27, 2012, 3:44 GMT

    "T20 is for the boys, tests are for the men." LOL, isnt all of them for Getlemen? So you mean Rahul Dravid would make the best T20 player since the fact if it is, he is the best Test player and a very well grown man in your view. All formats have certain requirements and demands for a player. No format is smarter than the other. You know what? Ain't a T20 fan but I love Cricket, only Cricket.

  • csowmi7 on May 27, 2012, 3:32 GMT

    @Kiwirocker. I cant believe u think Ricky Ponting is fluent against spin. You should of seen him floundering against Harbhajan who has him like 10 times. What's the great Ponting's average in India? Oh yes that's right its a pathetic 21. And its too early to say that Ashwin has lost his way. He has had 1 bad series in Austtralia which is a spinner's graveyard. He has not played enough to comment on his consistency

  • csowmi7 on May 27, 2012, 3:28 GMT

    hope to see Narine bowling for West Indies in the 3rd test against England and making them dance like they always do against quality spin. :)

  • maddy20 on May 27, 2012, 3:09 GMT

    @Kiwirocker Ricky Ponting a good player of spin? ROFL :D the guy averages 21 in tests in India. Muralitharan averages 50+ in India Shane warne Verges 45+ http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/player/8166.html?class=1;opposition=6;template=results;type=allround The laughable part is against the so called strong players of spin Pakistan, Warne Averages 20 http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/player/8166.html?class=1;opposition=7;template=results;type=allround I leave it for you decide who are over rated players of spin!

  • Jonathan_E on May 27, 2012, 2:56 GMT

    I wish England would arrange a series against the Windies, later in the summer. English Test grounds are usually pretty full, especially in the summer rather than late spring, the Windies need the income, and we might actually get a full team out of them, instead of just fobbing them off with a series mostly in May which used to be considered too early to have Tests. (Despite the fact that the current hot weather would be more like a July or August test match.)

    A proper English summer of Tests consists of 5 or 6 matches, spaced 2 or 3 weeks apart, running from mid-June to late August. Windies deserve at least half of that and I'd like to see it be the second half sometime. Hell, I'd love to see a full 5-match series again - but nobody seems to do 5-match series any more, except for Australia/England in the Ashes. It's difficult enough to even get a 4-match series out of anybody.

  • mngc1 on May 26, 2012, 23:43 GMT

    Shakib has a fan base working hard to get his price up at the next auction. In no way is he netter than Narine as a bowler. They have even tried to claim credit for what Narine achieved. Nor is he a better all rounder than Bravo in this IPL. He has shown nothing in his batting to be compared with Gayle. Enough of this Shakib being the best nonsense. He may be good and deserves his place but he isn't the best of anything by far.

  • 512fm on May 26, 2012, 22:22 GMT

    Congrats to him, but lets put it in perspective its the IPL. Test Cricket is a whole different deal, T20 is for the boys, tests are for the men. The same was being said about Mendis a couple of years ago and hes drifted off into the wilderness.

  • asraruwant on May 26, 2012, 22:16 GMT

    A very good insight into Sunil Narines past, present and what future might hold, really enjoyed reading it all. You can judge whether an article was good by seeing how u react at the end of it, although this was a pretty decent size article it felt small to me, Anyways coming to this man Sunil Narine i reckon if he stays fit and the WICB doesnt play around with his career then he will end up with 500+ test wickets. Because just like muralitharan he also turns the ball big. His stock ball which is his offspinner turns big and that is the key to be sucessful in long term. If his offspinner turns big then his other variations becomes that much more deadly in long run. If you guys can notice not just his offspinner but even his "doosra" turns big like a legbreak. Its not that it turns slightly but his doosra too turn like a legbreak. Hence , mark my words he will be the best spinner in the history of west indies cricket and second best offspinner in the history of test cricket after murali

  • zaman2012 on May 26, 2012, 19:26 GMT

    Sunil is no one compared to Shakib. Look at his stats before this IPL. Look at the test and ODI rankings. Sunil needs to be dropped in favor of Shakib.... Blah blah.....

  • Chona on May 26, 2012, 18:50 GMT

    I think Ponting must certainly would have strugged topick McGill...let alone Warne or other greats...so giving him the tag of "spin expert" is too much......Younis Khan yes...ok....Sachin Yes....Laxman yes....Ganguly Yes....all of them are masters of spin....but Ponting....are you serious "kiwirocker"...????

  • Nnskrish on May 26, 2012, 15:17 GMT

    @kiwirocker u seem to have forgotten how sachin used to pick warne or u may not have seen sehwag hittin murali like crazy in a test, Indians are blessed with some of the best spin players in recent times sehwag,sachin,dravid,yuvi,dhoni, gambhir and vvs all can play spin well , yes u were ri8 we were unable to pick mendis in that one off series but its us who gave it back to him in 2009 and 2010 when everyone got him worked his action..., its bcoz of us that warne and murali has some skewerd stats even they never got goin in india avg sme 40+ !! But u were ri8 about one thing we cant judge naraine yet we have to see how he performs in second season when everyone tries to read and work him up.....but seriously dude what on earth made u to think ponting a good player of spin?? of all the bowlers he was harbhajan had him as his bunny...

  • AMAZINGFAN on May 26, 2012, 14:48 GMT

    @kiwirocker,mendis was thrashed by indians after the asia cup 2008.that's why sl didn't pick him in wc final against ind.pak and ind batsmen are the one who thrashed mendis all parks.and i'm sure narine's mystery will be solved by the subcontinent batsmen.ricky ponting struggles even against ordinary bowler like harbhajan.ajmal is the best spinner in the world at the moment.he is way ahead of swann,narine and vettori.ajmal still has lot more variations and many batsmen still doesn't pick him.he is best spinner after muralitharan.

  • gandabhai on May 26, 2012, 14:29 GMT

    Sunil being such a brilliant spinner at such a young age makes him head & shoulders above the old man 'Ajmal'. What do you think Kiwirocker from karachi ?

  • larathegreatone on May 26, 2012, 12:10 GMT

    all the best sunil. keep your self humble and keep doing you best. you will be the greatest bowler of all time.

  • MSDhoni_Fan on May 26, 2012, 8:48 GMT

    Wondering why Mr. Sunil Narine is not playing in West Indies XI against England in the on-going test series! Always country comes first!!

  • WickyRoy.paklover on May 26, 2012, 7:46 GMT

    @KiwiRocker,agreed with 80% of ur comment here bt sayng indians as ovr.ratd specially against spin z bit too harsh i guess,they r probably bst against spin along with our pak batsmen n some of lankans@Andrew_Sam,straight ur record,pak was ist to neutralize nt only mendis bt also malinga,they were d ist to give them thrashng ,wait when narine plays against pak,i m pitty sure he z going d mendis way, dnt includ ashwin in ds list as he has nevr got d x.factor in hs short carer so far

  • gtzshotta on May 26, 2012, 7:39 GMT

    @kiwirocker LOL. Narine will be a great. All forms of the game, because he can turn the ball on any type of surface.

  • hemanofindia on May 26, 2012, 7:37 GMT

    All the best Mr Narine, you have to go long way. You have proved that a true sportsman can perform everywhere. He enjoys his game rather than blaming ground, court, soul, pitches and weather. Hats off! Really impressed. Current breed of Indian spinners need to learn a lot from you.

  • Andrew_Sam on May 26, 2012, 6:28 GMT

    Hey KiwiRocker,

    Yes Indians couldn't read him the very first time they faced him in the Asia Cup and in a couple of test matches in SL.

    But why don't you ask SL to pick them in their side against India (any format). Soon after that test series, he was dropped against India specifically because India not only played him well, but smashed him to destroy his confidence.

    And what are you saying about Ricky Ponting being a great player of spin? He's good, but not great.

  • Huss_Sac on May 26, 2012, 6:16 GMT

    @kiwi rocker...u r kidding me..Ricky ponting ll pick Narine??? he dint even pick mendis in T20 WC....indians overrated??? mendis is not in International cricket coz of indians....just coz u r allowed to post , u cant post whatever u want...

  • MJ1234 on May 26, 2012, 5:41 GMT

    Sunil Narine, Chris Gayle, Dwayne Bravo, Andre Russell and Pollard should have been in the WI team in England. Now, that WI cricket is finally looking up it is essetial that these IPL stars be drafted in to the team to give any of the front runners a run for their money.

  • Babu_B on May 26, 2012, 5:39 GMT

    @KiwiRocker, Ricky ponting? Seriously?? Master of playing spin? Younis Khan and Misbah to an extent, yes. Very Good against spin. And Ajmal, Murali and Swann are really good and better than Mendis and Ashwin. But Ricky Ponting a Master of playing spin??

  • CricketMaidenNoveldotcom on May 26, 2012, 5:34 GMT

    I really do hope that he books a one-way ticket to England, after the IPL-5, and bowls the West Indies to a series win over England !!!!! He really is a demi-god of spin; the next Sonny Ramdhin !!!!

  • hacperera on May 26, 2012, 5:27 GMT

    You no aggressive, hot tempered, but cool and calm. As Polard said you are appearing to be very humble human being. We would like the consistency of such qualities in the future same as the consistency of your talent.

  • indianpunter on May 26, 2012, 5:27 GMT

    @kiwirocker.. Ricky Ponting, master player of spin.. mate, you crack me up. i have a terrible side strain now.

  • AB-14 on May 26, 2012, 4:18 GMT

    i like the way narnine balls, i hope he does not get over confident. he can be the next big player from WI

  • johnathonjosephs on May 26, 2012, 4:03 GMT

    Narine you beauty. I hope he becomes a HUGE star for West Indies cricket. They sorely need him

  • KiwiRocker- on May 26, 2012, 3:59 GMT

    All this hype is premature and unnecessary. This chap has yet to play internation cricket where he will be up against likes of Ricky Ponting, Misbah Ul Haq and Younis Khan who are master players of spin bowling. Indian batsmen are over rated against spinner as Mendis had them clueless. Narine need to ensure that he is consistent and brings something special like what Saeed Ajmal has...Murali had..or Swann has...or else Narine will be forgotten like Mendis is..or R.Ashwin is..

  • Nadeem1976 on May 26, 2012, 3:57 GMT

    Is there any MVP award in IPL? , if there is then it should go to Narine for his super performance in this IPL. Best player so far. Too good a spinner to bat against.

    I hope Kalkata wins the final and Narine wins man of the match. This guy is really talented.

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  • Nadeem1976 on May 26, 2012, 3:57 GMT

    Is there any MVP award in IPL? , if there is then it should go to Narine for his super performance in this IPL. Best player so far. Too good a spinner to bat against.

    I hope Kalkata wins the final and Narine wins man of the match. This guy is really talented.

  • KiwiRocker- on May 26, 2012, 3:59 GMT

    All this hype is premature and unnecessary. This chap has yet to play internation cricket where he will be up against likes of Ricky Ponting, Misbah Ul Haq and Younis Khan who are master players of spin bowling. Indian batsmen are over rated against spinner as Mendis had them clueless. Narine need to ensure that he is consistent and brings something special like what Saeed Ajmal has...Murali had..or Swann has...or else Narine will be forgotten like Mendis is..or R.Ashwin is..

  • johnathonjosephs on May 26, 2012, 4:03 GMT

    Narine you beauty. I hope he becomes a HUGE star for West Indies cricket. They sorely need him

  • AB-14 on May 26, 2012, 4:18 GMT

    i like the way narnine balls, i hope he does not get over confident. he can be the next big player from WI

  • indianpunter on May 26, 2012, 5:27 GMT

    @kiwirocker.. Ricky Ponting, master player of spin.. mate, you crack me up. i have a terrible side strain now.

  • hacperera on May 26, 2012, 5:27 GMT

    You no aggressive, hot tempered, but cool and calm. As Polard said you are appearing to be very humble human being. We would like the consistency of such qualities in the future same as the consistency of your talent.

  • CricketMaidenNoveldotcom on May 26, 2012, 5:34 GMT

    I really do hope that he books a one-way ticket to England, after the IPL-5, and bowls the West Indies to a series win over England !!!!! He really is a demi-god of spin; the next Sonny Ramdhin !!!!

  • Babu_B on May 26, 2012, 5:39 GMT

    @KiwiRocker, Ricky ponting? Seriously?? Master of playing spin? Younis Khan and Misbah to an extent, yes. Very Good against spin. And Ajmal, Murali and Swann are really good and better than Mendis and Ashwin. But Ricky Ponting a Master of playing spin??

  • MJ1234 on May 26, 2012, 5:41 GMT

    Sunil Narine, Chris Gayle, Dwayne Bravo, Andre Russell and Pollard should have been in the WI team in England. Now, that WI cricket is finally looking up it is essetial that these IPL stars be drafted in to the team to give any of the front runners a run for their money.

  • Huss_Sac on May 26, 2012, 6:16 GMT

    @kiwi rocker...u r kidding me..Ricky ponting ll pick Narine??? he dint even pick mendis in T20 WC....indians overrated??? mendis is not in International cricket coz of indians....just coz u r allowed to post , u cant post whatever u want...