Chris Martin reveals secret of bowling at windy Basin Reserve

Updated: Feb 21, 2020, 08:00 IST | Gaurav Joshi | Wellington

Chris Martin is aware of the challenges the stiff breeze poses for bowlers, especially those who are not experienced running into it.

Chris Martin
Chris Martin

Chris Martin knows all about bowling at windy Wellington. The former New Zealand pacer is the leading wicket-taker at the Basin Reserve, claiming 60 wickets from 14 matches which include four five-wicket hauls.

Martin is aware of the challenges the stiff breeze poses for bowlers, especially those who are not experienced running into it. "The first problem I find is that running into the wind needs more effort, so by the time the bowler delivers the ball, they don't end up finishing their action," Martin told mid-day.

"There are only two types of bowlers at the Reserve—either a wind specialist who enjoys the role of running into the breeze. The other type of bowler will bowl with the breeze and try to make it count," he added.

According to Martin, the easiest way to spot if the bowler is struggling bowling into the breeze is when he tends to float the ball up rather than hitting the deck. "It will almost seem like there is no power behind the ball and it ends up being a half volley," he said.

Asked about the secret to succeeding at the Basin Reserve, Martin said: "Convince your captain to bowl with the wind all the time. The secret is to bend slightly more or lean forward. It should just happen naturally, but it is something to be mindful of."

There will be times during the Test match when each member of the Indian pace unit will be given the arduous task of running into the wind. So what advice does Martin have for them? "At times, the bowler simply needs to drop his ego and just play a defensive role. You need to work for your partner and work as a team," Martin said.

Martin retired from the game seven years ago and now runs a community store—The Four square—in the suburb of Eastbourne. While the day-to-day demands of the job keep him on his toes for the majority of the day, the lanky pacer will take some time off and head to the Basin Reserve on Friday to watch the opening day of the first Test.

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