When cricket fans hear of Umesh Yadav’s lineage, the son of a coal-miner from the outskirts of Nagpur, their mind immediately conjures up images of those two English fast-bowling giants who were also the sons of coal-miners — Harold Larwood and Fred Trueman.
It may be sometime before Yadav’s bowling will remind them of two of the true fast bowling firebrands. A few more fiery spells like ones he bowled on Boxing Day, and it will be a start.
He started his spell ominously, including a massive 16-run leak in this third over. But he is the sort of bowler who will get you wickets even if he fails to keep the runs in check, Yadav’s raw pace was enough to see him emulate mentor and coach Subroto Banerjee, who took 3/47 in his one and only Test, in taking three wickets in his first Test on Aussie soil.
Speaking to HT prior to the team’s arrival in Melbourne, Yadav had maintained that the presence of Banerjee, who shifted base to Australia in the mid-1990s, would be an added advantage. “Yeah, it’s great that he’s coming to watch me in action. Hopefully, he’ll be impressed with what he sees,” he said then. Impressed? Yes. But cautious too.
In addition to three key wickets, the Vidarbha pacer conceded 96 runs off his 20 overs. That is one area even he acknowledges needs to be worked upon. “I took wickets but also gave away far too many runs. So I’m happy, but not that happy as well,” he said.