Former England captain Michael Vaughan was praising Indian fast bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar. A return to the team on the back of a long-injured team – which lasted for more than 15 months – the Uttar Pradesh bowler is in good form. Even though he took just four wickets in the five-match T20I series against England in Ahmedabad, the way he bowled was more encouraging.
Bhuvi took two crucial wickets in the fifth and decisive T20I, conceding 15 runs in four overs at an economy rate of 3.80. In the same match, every other bowler from both teams took at least 7.80 runs per over. Hence Bhubaneswar won the man of the match award.
He made his debut in the first game of the ODI series at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune. The 31-year-old, returning with figures of 2/30 in nine overs, proved economical and helped the host team a lot in stabilizing the run-flow when it needed it the most.
Vaughan, while talking to Cricbuzz, called Bhubaneswar currently the most skilled white bowler in the world, who has a lot of diversity. He also praised his stunning comeback.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar is the most efficient white ball bowler in the world. I any other [गेंदबाज] Can’t think of someone who bowls 80-miles an hour and moves that white ball. He can move the ball easily just like Kumar. Whether it is an outswinger, inswinger, cutter. He can bowl yorkers and bouncers. Not often, but when he wants to unset a batsman, he will bowl a bouncer. I do not know of a more efficient bowler. Around the world at that pace. When you think he is coming back from injury, there is a notable comeback for Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
Bhubaneswar is a quiet man on the field and does not know his focus, anger and defeat. He is known about his business and does exactly what he does: take wickets. Vaughan said that this threat was in his bowling and he was not necessarily a scare. He also said that when facing someone like Bhubaneswar, you really have to think hard as a batsman.
Give me someone who bowled 90-odd miles any day of the week. I would close them with my eyes closed because I like the pace. But with someone like Bhubaneswar, you have to think so much. Everything has to happen. Be present on your timings. Because you know he must have been examining that front-foot, moving that ball either way. He can knock you out of skill. He can bowl balls that you may not necessarily prepare. Real fast bowling, it’s just your instinct, you can just react and play. When you are facing someone like Bhubaneswar, you really have to think hard as a batsman.
India and England play the horn at the same venue on Friday 26 March in the second ODI of the three-match series. To survive in the series, viewers must win this match.