Veteran Indian off-spinner Harbhajan Singh feels that the wrist spinners can be more effective with the pink ball than the finger spinners.
India and Bangladesh will play their first-ever day/night pink-ball Test match during the upcoming Kolkata Test, starting on this Friday (22nd November). It will be interesting to see how the pink ball reacts in this entire Test match.
The 39-year-old off-spinner Harbhajan Singh believes that the wrist spinners will have one advantage with the pink ball than the finger spinners.
Harbhajan told PTI, “Wrist spinners will have one advantage if you see because it’s going to be very difficult to pick the seam (with black stitches) of pink ball.”
We need to figure out more about spinners if we want to play more D/N Tests in future – Harbhajan Singh
Harbhajan Singh doesn’t want to comment about the playing XI for the upcoming historic Test match at Eden Gardens. He also believes that the Bangladesh team will have to handle first the Indian pacers before facing the Indian spinners.
He added, “Well, that’s the team management’s call and I can’t comment. But then Bangladesh need to play the Indian pacers on the seamer-friendly track before spinners are fully operational.
“And also between 3.30 and 4.30 pm, the time of sunset in Kolkata where seamers are known to do maximum damage. But yes we need to figure out more about spinners if we want to play more D/N Tests in future.”
During the 2016/17 Duleep trophy, which was day/night pink-ball first-class cricket tournament, the wrist-spinner Kuldeep Yadav finished as the most wicket-taker (17 wickets in three matches). Harbhajan pointed out that the success of Kuldeep Yadav with the pink ball.
He quoted, “If you remember Duleep Trophy, no one could effectively read Kuldeep from his wrists. Leg spinners got lot of wickets during that edition.”
In the final of 2016/17 Duleep Trophy, Ravindra Jadeja also took 10 wickets, including two five-wicket hauls.
Why wrist spinners can get a better result with the pink ball
Talking more about this, Harbhajan Singh explained why the wrist spinners can be more effective than the finger spinners.
Harbhajan said, “When a finger spinner bowls, the ball is released with seam so that there is turn and bounce. When you are bowling the googly, the seam will be scrambled and very difficult to pick.”
But Harbhajan Singh also believes that the legendary Sri Lankan off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan could achieve the huge success with the pink-ball. Muralitharan is the most wicket-taker in international cricket history as well as in Test and ODI history.
Harbhajan added, “But there are exceptions like Muttiah Muralitharan, who could have been a killer with the pink ball despite being a finger spinner because unlike other finger spinners, both his off-break and doosra were released with scrambled seam.”
Harbhajan Singh believes that the more lacquer in the pink ball may provide lesser effectiveness for the finger spinners due to the tougher grip on the ball.
He claimed, “More lacquer means that you will not have a good grip on the ball, especially finger spinners. And the ball starts skidding from the hand.”
After playing 103 Tests, Harbhajan Singh has taken 417 wickets – the third-most Test wicket-taker for India. While he played his last Test in August 2015, he played his last international match (T20I) in March 2016.