In simpler words, a Yorker is a delivery bowled by a fast bowler straight on to the bowler’s stumps. The ball is angled on to the batsman’s shoe or just a few cms away from the stumps. Such kind of Yorker deliveries usually help bowlers either clean bowl the batsman or atleast earn a LBW. But it’s not easy to bowl Yorkers consistently. It requires high amount of skill, craft, accuracy and practice for years to bowl consistently at the International level.
Types of Yorkers-
Slow Yorker has been one trending delivery in the later half of 2018, thanks to Bumrah’s peach deliveries vs Aus in Australia. It’s basically a fast bowler deceiving a batsman by bowling a normal Yorker delivery but removing the pace from the ball making the batsman confused as he would try to time the ball early expecting normal pace. Jasprit Bumrah who touched bowling speeds of 150+ bowled slow Yorkers with perfection at a pace of around 115-125 kmph which helped him take crucial wickets.
Players good at it-Jaspirit Bumrah, Shane Bond, Andrew Flintoff, Kyle Mills were some of the best bowlers with an expertise in slow Yorkers.
Swinging Yorkers are probably the toughest and very few bowlers can master the art of a swinging Yorker. The angle of the ball changes in the air and it maybe an inswing or a outswing Yorker as per the bowler’s plans. The bowler releases the ball in such a deadly angle that the ball swings in the air before reaching the batsman’s stumps or shoes which generally results in a sureshot wicket for the bowler.
Players good at it –Mitchell Starc, Trent Boult Mohamad Amir, Dale Steyn, Wasim Akram, Bhuveneshwar Kumar, Irfan Pathan, James Anderson, Zaheer Khan bowled some of the best swinging Yorker
Fast Yorker is also one dangerous weapon which fast bowlers love to use in crucial situations. A Yorker right onto your stumps or toe line at a speed of 140+ is very hard to dodge and plays a very important part in the death overs.
Players good at it– Dale Steyn, Shoaib Akhtar, Shaun Tait and Brett Lee were the best exponents of Fast Yorkers.
Toe Crusher was something which was made famous by one and only Lasith Malinga. The maverick Sri-Lankan fast bowler who used to bowl at a speed of 140+ in his peak days bowled right on the toes of the batsman. The batsman would either fall on the ground because of that deadly Yorker or would get clean bowled. Malinga made life difficult for the batsman in IPL with his toe crushers.
Players good at it- Waqar Younis, Lasith Malinga, Shoaib Akhtar
Why Yorkers are important-
Keeps a check on the run rate– When the batting side is going berserk or scoring runs at a good rate, the only weapon which can come in handy is a Yorker. A Yorker will restrict a batsman to open his hands freely, will reduce the number of 4’s, 6’s or even get you a few dot balls which can change the momentum drastically.
Develops the fear in the batsman– Be it Sachin or Chris Gayle, if you bowl them a dangerous Yorker at a searing pace in the early stage of the game, it will create a sense of security in the batsman’s mind. No matter how skilled a batsman is, he may try to play safely and dodge the bowler rather than dominating the bowler.
Can rattle a set batsman- If a batsman is going all over the ground tearing apart the bowlers, the only thing which can upset them is either of these 4 types of Yorkers. Because you bowl them any kind of delivery at any pace or any spin, they may keep scoring runs, but a toe crusher or a swinging Yorker can slow their tempo, probably upset their rhythm and calm them down.
Useful in the Death overs- Usually in the last 10 overs of an ODI or last 4 overs of a T20, a batsman will try to hit every ball out of the park but perfect Yorkers can not only help you fetch wickets It can also keep the batsman under control not allowing them to score runs freely. In the death overs, Yorkers can fetch you wickets and also keep the run rate down.