Bhuvneshwar Kumar set up win in Kolkata with opening spell: Virat Kohli | india-vs-australia-2017 | Hindustan Times
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Bhuvneshwar Kumar set up win in Kolkata with opening spell: Virat Kohli

Bhuvneshwar Kumar of Indian cricket team conceded just nine runs in his opening spell of six overs against Australia cricket team in Kolkata, taking the wickets of Hilton Cartwright (1) and David Warner (1).

india vs australia 2017 Updated: Sep 22, 2017 12:15 IST
HT Correspondent
Bhuvneshwar Kumar celebrates with Indian cricket team skipper Virat Kohli after taking the wicket of Australia cricket team opener Hilton Cartwright during the second ODI at Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Thursday.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar celebrates with Indian cricket team skipper Virat Kohli after taking the wicket of Australia cricket team opener Hilton Cartwright during the second ODI at Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Thursday. (AP)

While Kuldeep Yadav was the star for Indian cricket team in the second ODI with his hat-trick at the Eden Gardens on Thursday, it was Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s inspired spell at the start of the Australian innings that laid the foundation for the big win, said skipper Virat Kohli.(IND vs AUS 2nd ODI highlights)

Bhuvneshwar Kumar had an opening spell of six overs in which he gave away just nine runs, taking two wickets, that put Australia cricket team on the back foot right from the start of the chase of the Indian total of 252. Australia were eventually bowled out for 202 -- the result giving Virat Kohli and Co. a 2-0 lead in the five-game ODI series against Steve Smith’s Australia. (IND vs AUS 2nd ODI Scorecard)

Bhuvneshwar began by getting rid of Aussie opener Hilton Cartwright (1). The pacer forced Cartwright to play onto his stumps, the inswinging ball catching the inside edge. He followed it up by sending David Warner (1) back with a lovely delivery that swung away.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar was unlucky not to have scalped Travis Head, who was dropped by Rohit Sharma at first slip in the seventh over.

“Bhuvi’s (Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s) spell became even very important, because we knew those two wrist spinners (Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal) will probably do damage in the middle overs,” said Virat Kohli after the match. “So they (Australia) probably had to get a few runs in the first ten. And we needed a couple of breakthroughs. We almost got the third one as well. That would have been ideal.”

Kohli termed Bhuvi’s wicket-taking deliveries as unplayable.

“I know he (Kumar) really set the tone with the six over spell of nine runs , picking up two wickets. That was outstanding. Deliveries that he got the batsman out were unplayable,” said Kohli. “That’s what he brings to the table, you know. When there is bit of assistance from the pitch, you count on Bhuvi for getting you breakthroughs.”

After the Indian innings, the predominant feeling was that the hosts didn’t have enough on the board. Pressure was on Kohli and the bowlers but the skipper knew the wicket was not that easy.

“We knew if we have a breakthrough, we have a chance of having a go at defending the target,” said Kohli. “We needed breakthroughs throughout. Bhuvi provided it initially. His spell is something that really set up the game for us, along with (Jasprit) Bumrah. We knew if we don’t take wickets, it will be difficult with the outfield being a bit wet.”