Bharat Arun — shaping young bowlers

Guiding pacemen in the Indian team, Bharat Arun has worked extensively with Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Umesh Yadav.

V. V. Subrahmanyam

Bharat Arun... coaching Hyderabad these days.   -  V. V. Subrahmanyam

Bharat Arun’s commitment to his job shines through in his approach. He spends time with the boys, listens to them and offers suggestions without ever appearing to be abrasive.

The former India bowling coach and former Tamil Nadu coach shared his thoughts with Sportstar. “You first look for a spark, whether the youngster in question has the ability, you then work on him.”

Despite coaching Hyderabad these days — he has done an excellent job with the pace trio of Mohammed Siraj, C. V. Molind and Ravi Kiran — Arun continues to care for Tamil Nadu cricket.

“Tamil Nadu has a promising pace attack now, but it is still inexperienced. You have two bowlers K. Vignesh and T. Natarajan bowling around 135kmph,” he said.

Guiding pacemen in the Indian team, he has worked extensively with Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Umesh Yadav.

He said, “One of the challenges was to make Bhuvneshwar improve his pace without losing his swing and control. We got him to bowl at 135+ kmph without forgoing his accuracy and movement.

“Bumrah was a different bowler with a unique action and we got him to be effective without losing his originality, blending his individualistic style with the basics.”

Arun said, “All pace bowlers are different. Most of them use the short lever for load-up but some, like Bumrah, use the long lever. It then becomes difficult for the batsmen to pick their action.”

In fact, Arun had a large part to play in Bumrah sending down those incisive yorkers at the ‘death’. “You need to hit the toe of the batsman or the block-hole. Bumrah and others practised with shoes on the pitch at the yorker length. If you hit the shoes, your yorker is on the mark.”

He elaborated, “Bowling effective yorkers is a lot about feeling the length. Bumrah has that quality.”

Arun had a role in Umesh’s development too. “We got his wrist position straighter. This meant he was bowling a lot closer to the target and made him more accurate.”

The former India paceman added, “You need to be more aligned to the batsman [the target] as Umesh is now to be more effective. Umesh is strong physically, has a strong semi-open action and uses his entire body to generate speed.”

Arun said he worked on the Indian pacemen getting the right amount of movement. “If you bring the ball in, you need to do so from the fourth stump, otherwise you would be taken for runs on the leg-side. And if you want to move the ball away, you do so from the off-stump or a stump outside off. And you don’t need to move the ball more than half the width of a bat to find the edge.”

The right length for Arun was: “If you are able to swing the ball, you have to pitch the ball up. Otherwise, you have to hit the deck about six metres from the stumps at around 135kmph at least.”

The man from Chennai is busy shaping cricketing careers all right. Arun is on the ball.

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