Kuldeep Yadav seems to be emerging as the biggest threat for the hosts in the ongoing India’s tour of England. In the opening T20I match of the three-match series, Yadav wrecked havoc on the English batsmen and picked up a 5-fer to decimate them to 159, which the Men in Blue chased down comfortably with 10 balls to spare. The youngster from Kanpur picked up the important wickets of Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, Eoin Morgan, Alex Hales. Also Read - IPL 2020 Updates: Rajasthan Royals Ben Stokes, Steve Smith, Jofra Archer, Jos Buttler Could Miss in First Few Matches in UAE
The chinaman has had a great season leading into the English tour. He picked up the Man of the Series in Ireland T20Is as well. The English side, who themselves have been in good form, however got a reality check when they face Virat Kohli & Co at the Old Trafford. His figures of 5 for 24 seem to have sent shivers down the spine of the hosts and that’s why they have resorted to a special bowling machine called ‘Merlyn’.
Buttler, the only batsman who seemed to be in some sort of comfort in Manchester, explained, as quoted by cricket.com.au: “One thing we can do is with Merlyn, to replicate the angle. It’s a very good machine to get used to that. But it was the first time some guys have faced Kuldeep and it may take one or two games, plus video.
It’s about understanding that you shouldn’t get too flustered. With spin it can all happen quickly, suddenly you have faced a few balls and aren’t off the mark, so it’s not allowing that to affect you. You have to get used to the action and once you have faced them a bit more it gets easier. You have a bit more trust and might pick up a few cues.”
So what is Merlyn?
Merlyn, capable of bowling “any ball known to man”, was introduced to the England side ahead of the 2005 Ashes to nullify the threat of spin legend Shane Warne and it had done wonders for the Michael Vaughan-led side as they won the coveted trophy 3-2.