I am a very different bowler now: Coulter-Nile


Nathan Coulter-Nile has a tough job. At 28 and yet to break into the Australian Test side, he has the responsibility of leading the country’s famed pace attack. Retirement of the likes of Mitchell Johnson and injuries to Mitchell Starc and Peter Siddle mean Coulter-Nile has had an accelerated exposure to pressure, as seen during the recent World T20.

That is expected to hold him in good stead at Delhi Daredevils, which has had a rethink of its strategy for the ninth season of the IPL and is packed with Indian youngsters who are yet to find a place in the national reckoning. But Coulter-Nile isn’t worried despite Delhi not having had a great run in the IPL all these years and losing the opening game of 2016 by nine wickets.

“T20 is so much about trusting your skills and many of these young Indian players coming through are so good, they have so much confidence and belief in themselves. Most of these guys are so much better than me anyways! I don’t think there is much need for guidance, we just need to trust in their abilities and let them go,” he told The Hindu ahead of the game against Kings XI Punjab.

Praise for Kohli
Having done almost everything right, Australia was undone by Virat Kohli’s brilliance in its final league match of the World T20 and Coulter-Nile admitted it was one of the best innings they had seen.

“Well there are very few like him in the world at the moment, maybe only two or three — A.B. de Villiers, Joe Root, Steve Smith — what more can you say, he’s very special. It’s always disappointing to lose when you are aiming to go for the title but it was about one player having his day out.

“That said, I guess it’s more difficult to accept defeat if you don’t bowl to your plans but I think we did. T20 is a sport where a Chris Gayle comes in and goes to get a 100 to win a game. Saying it’s all about one player isn’t correct, it’s still a team effort, but one player coming and doing it goes a long way in winning a game,” he admitted.

As someone who is respected as one of the most difficult bowlers to play against, Coulter-Nile said he has had to bring variety into his game to stay relevant. “I am a very different bowler from when I started. I have had to develop slower balls and work with different field settings. As the batsmen get better and the grounds become smaller and the pitches get flatter, you have to find something special.

“Naturally people want to see fours and sixes being hit, not bowlers bowling dot balls. That’s how the game goes and you have to find ways against that. But I believe there will always be place for bowlers, I guess it will get pretty boring watching a bowling machine throwing out stuff,” he laughed off.

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