How to Score Fast and Hit Clean like Yusuf Pathan | Cricket coaching, fitness and tips

How to Score Fast and Hit Clean like Yusuf Pathan

15 balls.

That's how long it took Yusuf Pathan to reach the fastest fifty in IPL history. He hit Dale Steyn for twenty six in an over. It was a thoroughly modern display of power batting.

What happened in the 22 ball innings tells a story of batting, a story that can teach you a thing or two.


It wasn't the elegant work of a master tailor making a bespoke suit. It was more of a blacksmith fashioning a crowbar.

He sweated, he heaved and he scythed.

But he also brought his side - KKR - to a crushing victory.

It was a masterpiece of contextual batting. By that I mean Pathan knew he need to score, and score quickly. KKR had to score at tens to win and get a better run rate than the closest rival. By the time he got the crease that has risen to thirteen and a half.

Time to swing from the laces.

And that's the first secret of scoring at such a rate: Context is all. Had Pathan tried to do this in a Test match or even at the start of a 50 over match, he would have looked foolish. But here the calculation was simple: Hit out or get out.

Even the most complex of characters don't have to think about it. You can relax, unclench and stride out to the middle with absolute clarity of both your role and your tactical approach.

So, true to form, Pathan tried to clear the long on rope first ball.

Ride your luck

And he was dropped. It was an easy chance.

Maybe then Pathan felt it was his day, because he continued to ride his luck throughout the innings. He burst a ball through Dale Steyn's hands on the boundary, he nicked an ugly heave just wide of the keeper and sliced a shot for six.

In between he biffed some amazing clean boundaries, including the aforementioned 5 in an over against one of the best bowlers in the world; Dale Steyn.

But this was about far more than luck. As researchers have found out, "lucky" people expect to be lucky, so it's not a surprise when they get luck. They carry on confident they will succeed, even when the chance of success is low.

Sounds a lot like the way Yusuf Pathan played, and it's a trick you can absolutely employ yourself. It's simply a mental frame. If you fool yourself to play as if it means nothing even when it means everything you will relentlessly drive towards your goal.

You do this even in the face of evidence that you are failing. Pathan was dropped on the boundary. It would have been reasonable to consider moving to another scoring plan. He did no such thing. As he said in the post-match aftermath;

"I'm clear about what do I want and I know my ability... I just keep backing myself. It's like being well prepared before an exam."

Play your game

And speaking of knowing your ability, it was obvious what Pathan was trying to do, he just did it so well he was unstoppable.

After getting dropped, he took a couple of balls to recover and then decided enough was enough when he got to ball 5. Against the spinner he stepped back and across as a trigger move and swung.

It went 84 metres.

As you can see, this was premeditated, but from this position he is able to hit any ball to the boundary. This one was back of a length, so simple to pull, but he could just as easily have driven a fuller ball, or cut a ball on the off side.

Read more about the power of this movement here.

He continued the "backload" method against Steyn, hitting multiple clean boundaries.

That's a method anyone can try, but Pathan's game is specific to big hitting. He hits with power and he goes leg side. He basically has 2 shots; the on drive and slog sweep. Both use great bat speed and are hit in an arc between square leg and wide mid on.

He scored 41 of his 72 in this area.

Frankly, the other runs were just mishit versions of the same shot.

It's fair to say he is a batsman who knows his areas. It's just that his combination of speed, technique and strength means his "areas" are halfway up the stands.

As a side note, it's worth mentioning that this kind of slogging still requires technique.

Pathan's weight went forward, allowing a full swing of the arms. When the ball is a half volley he drives with a straight bat. His backlift is impeccably over off stump. A common error when hitting out is for batsmen to let the bat go behind them:

So there is even something of interest for the technicians: Big hitting still needs world-class basics.

A final warning

Of course, what this analysis has so far failed to mention is that Pathan has had a couple of terrible IPL seasons. He doesn't do this kind of batting consistently. And that should act as a warning to you.

He plays impressive cricket, but it is also high risk cricket. If you choose to go for your shots you also choose to risk getting out more often. This is fine when your role is like Yusuf Pathan: He is allowed to fail in his all-guns-blazing efforts to change a match.

You may not have such freedom in your team.

So take your time to think about what you can take from Pathan's innings, and style. Then decide what you can leave aside. Learn from him, take his example then take your own route.

It's the best way to succeed.

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As an all rounder of Oman national U-16 team I think this is absolutley correct. I feel this this is where i can learn more.

Yusuf pathan will be come back ODI in this time