Harbhajan Singh has said David Warner is tougher to bowl to than Chris Gayle in the IPL, while naming Rohit Sharma and AB de Villiers as the most dangerous batsmen due to their variety of strokes.
In an interview to The Cricket Monthly, Harbhajan explained that Warner has a bigger range of strokes than Gayle.
"Warner is very good on the back foot - he will cut you. He can switch-hit, he can sweep pretty nicely, he can hit you over cover. He can step out too. Compared to Gayle, Warner is more difficult for me to bowl to," he said.
"Gayle, if someone bowls quick to him, he will keep hitting sixes. If someone bowls slow to him, he'll have to come out of the crease, which he is not comfortable with. I have never ever felt it difficult to bowl against Gayle. I have bowled a lot at him in powerplays. He did not have the sweep. He did not have the shot over mid-on.
"Warner hits everywhere, so it is very important to vary the pace against him. Your body language, your eye contact has to be right. You cannot show him you are scared."
Harbhajan, currently with Chennai Super Kings and formerly with Mumbai Indians in the IPL, has got Warner four times and Gayle five times in the tournament. Explaining his mindset, he said he was always looking at wicket-taking opportunities irrespective of the batsman.
"I just back myself. It is not like they have not hit me for sixes, but I will always look to get them out. Only if you get them out will you win the match. I always remind my colleagues about this. Anil bhai always used to say, "Every ball, you have the opportunity to get him out. How you want to do that, you have to use your brains."," he said.
"Last IPL, against Sunrisers Hyderabad, when I came back to finish my spell, it was the middle overs. The field was open, so I could toss it up a little more. Warner does not step out when the field is spread. He does that when the ball is new, and he had hit me when the ball was not spinning much, during the powerplay. But if you make the ball spin even a little, you create doubt. When I came back, I tossed it higher, Warner came out and was stumped. I was brought back to bowl to get him out. I knew even if I was going to go for runs, I wanted to get him out."