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Saturday, July 20, 2024
Bhuvneshwar Kumar

Bhuvneshwar Kumar

Age 34IndiaINDIA
Right-arm medium Bowler

Not many bowlers begin their career, as well as Bhuvneshwar Kumar did, for India. He struck in his very first over in both ODIs and T20Is, both against Pakistan in 2012 and 2013 respectively. Another one of Indian cricket's extracts from the state of Uttar Pradesh, his predecessors being Praveen Kumar and RP Singh, Kumar is well renowned for his ability to swing the ball both ways.

Bhuvneshwar got his name etched in the history books when he dismissed Sachin Tendulkar for his first first-class duck in Indian domestic cricket. The right-arm medium pacer was playing just his 11th first-class game, then. His career graph took a snake-head climb from there on, turning into a consistent wicket-taker in ODIs.

He didn’t get many opportunities in Tests but showed his true skills when he picked up his first five-for in the Nottingham Test in 2014. Another five-for followed in the next Test which India won at Lord’s which also put his name on the Lord’s Honors Board. He ended up taking 19 wickets in five matches besides scoring 247 runs with the help of three fifties. Things appeared rosy for Bhuvi at that time but soon the pressure of international cricket got to him. He failed to cope up with the extra workload and it started to reflect in his bowling. He struggled and didn’t take wickets as easily as he did before.

Consequently, Kumar lost his place in the side as he thrived for extra pace and in the process lost his main weapon, i.e. swing. After beginning with Bangalore and a stint with Pune, it was with Hyderabad franchise in 2014 where he started to get his mojo back. There were talks about him being only a new-ball bowler but he toiled hard to better his bowling with the old ball and came out triumph, acquiring the quality to bowl fast yorkers at the death. He also became the first bowler to win the award for most wickets in an edition in successive seasons of the Indian T20 League.

Kumar is considered a bowler for all formats, but he failed to keep his spot in national team's regular Test and ODI squads. With India producing an army of pace bowlers, it's becoming increasingly difficult for Bhuvneshwar Kumar to regain his position but in T20 cricket, he is still India's one of the lethal weapons. It remains to be seen whether Kumar wins his position back across all formats, with age not on his side any more.

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