'18 months ago, we thought he didn't have a career': Manjrekar calls senior India player a 'certainty' for T20 World Cup

Updated on Aug 03, 2022 02:05 PM IST

Around this time last year, the likes of Dinesh Karthik, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Hardik Pandya, Arshdeep Singh or Shubman Gill were not even in the mix. But things have changed a lot in the last 12 months.

From Left: Shikhar Dhawan, Hardik Pandya, Dinesh Karthik and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. (Getty Images)
From Left: Shikhar Dhawan, Hardik Pandya, Dinesh Karthik and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. (Getty Images)
By, New Delhi

The T20 World Cup is three months away, and for India it is an opportunity to bury the ghosts of last year's World Cup and start afresh. A lot would have changed between now and then – Rohit Sharma has replaced Virat Kohli as India's captain and Rahul Dravid has taken over the coaching duties from Ravi Shastri. And hence, in the first ICC event of the Rohit-Dravid era, India would be aiming to go full steam. This is evident through India's experimentations as with each series, they are trying out different combinations to settle in for the best Paying XI and squad for the T20 World Cup.

Not only has there been a change in guard in the support staff, but also in the players that are in contention. Around this time last year, the likes of Dinesh Karthik, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Hardik Pandya, Arshdeep Singh or Shubman Gill were not even in the mix, but the experience duo of DK and Bhuvi are back in the selectors' radar, while Gill, Arshdeep and several other youngsters have impressed immensely.

Bhuvneshwar in particular has appeared a different cricketer altogether. After dealing with form and fitness issues, it seemed like the end was nearing for Bhuvneshwar, but the way he has rediscovered his mojo, getting the vicious in and outswingers with pace and giving his team early breakthroughs. Weighing in on Bhuvneshwar's resurgence, former India cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar feels the senior India pacer's performances make him an automatic pick for India at the T20 World Cup.

"Bhuvneshwar Kumar recently gave an interview, and he is at his peak at the moment. Eighteen months back, we thought he may not have an international career. But he has bounced back superbly and is a certainty to make the T20 world cup squad," he told Sports18's daily sports news show 'Sports Over The Top'

Since the T20 World Cup last year, Bhuvneshwar has scalped 20 wickets for India in 15 matches with a best of 4/13 against South Africa in Vizag. Unlike a lot of other senior India cricketers, Bhuvneshwar hasn't taken breaks, which Manjrekar feels has worked even better for the 32-year-old quick.

"Bhuvneshwar Kumar clearly has said like it is with a lot of players when you're going through a rut, the best way to come out of the rut is by playing. So hopefully that will happen soon," he added.

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