Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Umesh Yadav experienced contrasting fortunes in their teams’ victories in the 2017 Indian Premier League (IPL) on Monday. While Bhuvneshwar played a stellar role in Sunrisers Hyderabad’s win over Kings XI Punjab, Umesh achieved a dubious distinction during Kolkata Knight Riders’ victory.
In the game against Delhi Daredevils at the Ferozeshah Kotla, Rishabh Pant slammed three sixes and two fours in Umesh’s final over. The India pacer ended with figures of 4-0-53-1. This was the fourth time that Umesh had conceded 50 or more in the IPL -- the joint-highest along with Ashok Dinda, who plays for Rising Pune Supergiant.
Umesh is second in the list for conceding the most number of runs in an innings in the IPL. In 2013, he conceded 65 runs off four overs in the IPL game between Delhi Daredevils and Royal Challengers Bangalore, also played at the Kotla.
Ishant Sharma’s dubious record
Ishant Sharma, who currently plays for Kings XI Punjab, holds the record for conceding the most runs in an IPL game, smashed for 66 runs in four overs by Chennai Super Kings in the 2013 IPL while playing for Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Amit Mishra, Munaf Patel and RP Singh are the other Indian bowlers who have gone for 50 runs or more three times in the IPL. Among international bowlers, Andre Russell of West Indies has conceded 50 or more three times.
Umesh played a stellar role during India’s brilliant Test summer at home. His peak was during the Australia series, where his pace, hostility and reverse swing fetched him 17 wickets and helped India rally to win the series 2-1. He was rested for the first couple of games for Kolkata Knight Riders, but came back in style with a haul of 4/33 against Kings XI Punjab. That spell prompted skipper Gautam Gambhir to label him an extremely insightful and intelligent bowler.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar in prime form
On the other hand, Umesh’s new ball partner in the Dharamsala Test, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, has enjoyed a splendid run in the 2017 IPL. In five matches, he has taken 15 wickets at a magnificent average of eight. In the game against Kings XI Punjab, the right-arm pacer picked 5/19, his maiden five-wicket haul in Twenty20s, as Sunrisers Hyderabad registered a five-run win to move to third in the points table.
During his time in Sunrisers Hyderabad from the 2014 IPL, Bhuvneshwar’s bowling has improved by leaps and bounds. He is their designated death bowler and his control and economy rate played a massive role in Sunrisers Hyderabad winning the 2016 IPL title.
In 50 games that Bhuvneshwar has played for the team in the last four years, he is the leading wicket-taker with 76 wickets at a magnificent average of 17.88 and an economy rate of 7.12.
Bhuvneshwar’s performance puts him in a great frame of mind with the Champions Trophy approaching. Umesh will be hoping to get his act together as the Indian Premier League rolls on.