Indian cricket’s new spin sensation Kuldeep Yadav has revealed Australian greats Shane Warne and Brad Hogg’s crucial role in his rapid development.
The left-arm wrist spinner has taken regular wickets during Australia’s tour of India and was superb in the first T20 international on Sunday, claiming 2-16 off his four overs.
His hat-trick in the second one-day international was the first by an Indian spin bowler.
Yadav’s first meeting with the legendary Warne came during his Test debut earlier in the year in Dharamshala, where he took 4-68 in Australia’s first innings.
And he has played alongside Hogg for two seasons at IPL side Kolkata Knight Riders.
“Both play a very important role in my career,” Yadav said.
“I’ve followed Shane Warne since childhood. He’s my idol.
“My life will be a success if I could achieve 50 per cent of what he has achieved.”
Since his meeting with Warne, Yadav has played in all formats for India.
His performances prompted Warne to suggest he could challenge Pakistan’s Yashir Shah as the world’s best leg-spinner.
Yadav, 22, said he keeps in touch with Warne who mentors him on wrist position, flight, drift and the art of deception.
In the veteran Hogg, he has a rare left-arm leg-spinner to see up close.
“You learn a lot with a fellow chinaman, be it his flipper or wrong’un,” Yadav said.
“He’s 46 now with a career span of over 23 years. For me, it’s just the start of my career.
“It’s great to gain some experience from them.”
Yadav’s next chance to bamboozle Australia’s struggling batsmen will come in Tuesday’s T20 in Guwahat.
An Indian victory will consign the visitors to two series defeat for the tour.