Resurgent off-spinner Sunil Narine hopes his career-best performance against South Africa on Friday proves a turning point in his career, and that he can flip the page on the recent troubles surrounding his bowling action.
In his first international appearance in seven months following an ICC ban last November, the 28-year-old snatched six for 27 at the Guyana National Stadium, to set up West Indies’ four-wicket victory in the first game of the Tri-Nations Series.
“Being on and off with my bowling action and coming back and bowling again, it is good to be back with a bang,” Narine said.
“Hopefully everything is good now and I can keep concentrating on the matches ahead and what I can focus more on in practice and bowling and trying to develop new skills so things can get better in the future.”
After being forced to undergo rehabilitation on his action, Narine was cleared by the ICC in April but his impact for Kolkata Knight Riders in the recent Indian Premier League was less than stellar, as he finished with 11 wickets at 27 runs apiece in 11 outings.
However, he made an instant impact on Friday. With the Proteas coasting at 160 for three, he intervened to trigger a collapse which saw the last seven wickets tumble for 28 runs as the visitors were dismissed for 188.
“In the first few overs I got an early wicket. It’s nice as a bowler getting an early wicket in your spell, it makes things a bit easier,” the Trinidadian explained.
“But saying that, it was a total team effort. Carlos (Brathwaite) and I had a good partnership bowling-wise and with a couple wickets I think we pulled the brakes, and everyone just chipped in.
“The captain (Jason Holder) came in and kept things tight, and (Sulieman) Benn kept it tight and everyone just continued doing what they had to do and went from strength to strength.”
He continued: “It’s a difficult wicket to bat on and the boundaries are a bit bigger than normal, and the wicket doesn’t help the batsman as much as they generally do in other grounds.
“[But] ou still have to keep the basics and keep focussing on things that will improve your skills and will make you keep doing the best you can.”
West Indies take on World champions Australia on Sunday in their second game of the tournament and Narine said he would be looking to contribute to another victory for the hosts.
“I would love to have a similar game but saying that is the easiest part. It is about being able to go out there and perform at my best and being able to just contribute whatever the team needs me to do,” Narine said.
“All the guys are raring to go and hopefully all of the guys can have better games and we can just have a total team effort and hopefully come out with another victory.”
(Taken from CMC)