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Charl Langeveldt surprises Bhuvi’s knuckleball development in quick time
By Sandy - Feb 20, 2018 9:56 am
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Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s knuckleball is now one of the most trending discussion topics in the cricket world. The techniques came from the baseball pitching, bowlers tend to grip the ball with the top of their fingernails while their fingers perched crookedly on the seam portion of the ball. Delivering the ball with the fingernails, it reduces the spin from the ball and runs to the batsmen with slower pace.

bhuvneshwar
Bhuvneshwar Kumar

A batsman faces tough to understand the knuckleball as it initially floats like a full-toss before landing on the pitch. Moreover, it’s very difficult to understand the next behaviour of the ball after pitching.

Talking about the developing skills to bowl this dangerous slower knuckleball, Indian right-handed pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar recently said, “I developed it just before the IPL. During Test matches in India, the ball doesn’t swing much, and you have two fielders in catching positions so keeping that in mind, I developed the ball. But I didn’t know that it would be handy in T20s and one-dayers too. I’m glad I added this variation.”

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It is not a new bowling technique in cricket. In the modern generation, many bowlers have practised developing this quality while some of them become masters to produce this ball in international cricket with the successful result. Former Indian pacer Zaheer Khan, Australian pacer Andrew Tye, West Indian spinner Sunil Narine etc. became famous with this knuckleball delivery.

Former South African pacer and present South African bowling coach Charl Langeveldt is surprised to see that Bhuvneshwar Kumar developed the knuckleball in very quick time, which is not an easy to bowl perfectly. Langeveldt said on it, “Perfecting any delivery is difficult, but the knuckleball even more so, as the bowler is doing something that’s contrary to what the coaches and manuals teach him. Any coach starts coaching by teaching the bowler how to grip, to wrap young fingers over the seam, to hold the seam upright or whatever. You have been bowling like that for your entire life, and then you start gripping the ball with the tip of your fingers. It’s incredibly difficult, which is a reason there are so few exponents of knuckleball.”

Charl Langeveldt
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Talking about the totally different grip technique, Langeveldt described, “You can’t keep the fingers tight, for the ball wouldn’t travel. You can’t keep it too loose either. The fingers should be extremely relaxed. You should make the ball float, not like a spinner would flight the ball, in the air. To do that you need to have extremely supple wrists and fingers.”