Yorkers are a multi-purpose weapon for fast bowlers in cricket. Not only do they have immense wicket taking potential, they also help to keep runs to a minimum due to how hard it is to hit a yorker for a boundary. Give how effective they are, it is only natural that fast bowlers want to bowl as many of them as possible, but this raises a question. How many yorkers is it possible for a bowler to bowl? More specifically, how many yorkers can be bowled in an over? That is the question I’ll be answering in this post.
So, let’s get straight into it…
How many yorkers can be bowled in an over?
Technically there is no limit to the number of yorkers that can be bowled in an over. An over is formed of 6 legal deliveries, so a bowler can bowl 6 yorkers in an over if they choose to. There are no cricket rules regulating the use of yorkers.
If a bowler bowled 6 yorkers in an over but one of these was judged to be a no ball or a wide, then this would mean that they have to bowl an extra delivery. If this extra delivery was also a yorker, that would count as 7 yorkers in a 7 ball over. So, technically it is possible to bowl more than 6 yorkers if no balls/wides are included as part of the count.
Although plenty of bowlers may want to bowl 6 yorkers in an over because of how hard they are to hit, they often find that this is rather difficult to do. Yorkers target an incredibly small area of the pitch close to the batsman’s feet (shown in the picture below), and as a result bowling 6 perfect yorkers in a row is a skill that even the most elite fast bowlers struggle to master.
Why Is It Difficult To Bowl 6 Yorkers In An Over?
Because the area that a bowler has to hit when bowling a yorker is so small, it’s very hard to develop the level of accuracy needed to hit the mark 6 times in an over. The margin of error is so tiny, that if the ball leaves your hand slightly too early or slightly too late it will result in you bowling a full toss or a half volley.
In addition to the issue of accuracy, an elite batsman will also be doing everything possible to try to put you off or force you to bowl somewhere else. For example, if a batsman like Jos Buttler notices that a bowler is trying to bowl yorkers exclusively, he will move around the crease in order to take advantage of it. He may step down the pitch and strike the ball on the full, he may step backwards and go deep in his crease to turn the yorker into a half volley, or he may play a shot like the scoop in order to intercept the ball on the full. If a batsman is making movements and playing shots like this, it’s difficult for bowlers to hold their nerve and continue to deliver a yorker ball after ball.
How To Bowl Yorkers More Consistently
If you want to nail your yorker consistently, you’re going to have to spend hours working on them on the practice pitch. Fortunately, I came up with a few helpful tips that should assist you during your practice sessions and matches when it comes to bowling this type of delivery. Here they are:
- Control Your Eyes – Having your eyes focused on the spot that you want to bowl as you approach the crease can help you to deliver the ball in that area. During your practice sessions, get into the habit of staring at a certain point on the pitch – trust me, it works!
- Adopt A Confident Attitude – You’ll be much more likely to deliver a perfect yorker if you have belief in your ability to do so. Certain bowlers don’t back themselves enough, and this leads to them taking pace off the ball and floating it up there towards the batsman. Really good yorker bowlers approach the crease with serious intent and back themselves to deliver. This confidence is built through hours of practice.
- Remember That Practice Makes Perfect – Great bowlers like Lasith Malinga weren’t just blessed with an ability to bowl perfect yorkers. This ability was developed through thousands and thousands of hours of work in the nets! If you want to bowl this kind of delivery accurately, I’d recommend devoting at least a couple of hours a week to practicing it specifically.
- Take Swing Into Account – The best yorker bowlers will take swing into account when bowling them. For example, when bowling his trademark inswinging yorker, Waqar Younis would ensure that he bowled the ball outside the off stump of a right handed batsman. By starting the ball on this line, Waqar would ensure that once it swung in it would be aimed directly at the feet of the batsman. All fast bowlers should learn to control the swing and take this into consideration when bowling their yorkers.
- Watch The Batsman & React To Their Movements – Most bowlers know that batsmen will often move around the crease before the ball is bowled in the hope that it will distract the bowler. As bowlers, we need to keep an eye on them and react to the moves they make. For example, one way that a batsman will try to attack a yorker is by backing away and giving themselves room to hit the ball through the off side.If you see a batsman make this move, then you need to adjust the line of your yorker in order to target their feet in their new position. You could also choose to throw the yorker extra wide so that it is hard for the batsman to reach now that they’ve backed away.
- Use Specific Yorker Drills During Practice – As a fast bowler myself, I’ve used multiple different yorker drills in order to increase my accuracy over the years. These are not only incredibly effective, they can also be quite fun too! Especially if you can turn it into a bit of a competition with your teammates. I usually use a combination of static and dynamic target practice drills – I’d strongly recommend you look into using these too!
If you’d like to read more about the tips above, including all of the details about how to perform the static and dynamic target practice drills, click the link here to read one of my more technical posts on yorker bowling!
I hope this post answered any questions you may have about how many yorkers can be bowled in an over. If you have other cricket-based questions, feel free to have a browse through the different pages on my site. I’m sure you’ll see something that grabs your interest!