There was never any doubt on the talent that a certain Bhuvneshwar Kumar possessed. But after a wonderful start to his international career which saw him baffling batsmen with his ability to swing the ball both ways effectively, there was a period where Kumar, in the process of trying to increase his pace had lost his ability to swing the ball as well as he used to. The potency of his bowling dipped hugely during this period and as a result, he couldn’t cement a spot in the national squad for any format of the game.
However, like all great players, he worked hard on his skills and took failure as a motivation to improve himself. He has now seemed to have found the right balance as he has managed to add a few extra yards to his pace and swing the new ball as well. He has also put in a lot of effort on bowling perfect yorkers which is showing in his IPL performances. He is the leading wicket-taker in the current edition of the IPL with 21 wickets from 10 games and is far ahead in front of the rest with Imran Tahir being second on that list with 17 wickets having played one more game than Kumar. The purple cap for the season is most probably bound to stay with Kumar as the next three bowlers on the list are set to leave the tournament before it ends for national duty.
Sunrisers Hyderabad head coach Tom Moody was very pleased with the bowler’s performances. “He’s (Bhuvneshwar) got great strike-ability at the top with the new ball because he swings it both ways and he’s developed wonderful skills on how to close the innings. Those types of bowlers are few and far between,” Moody said. “His economy in the last four overs is in the mid 7s which is something remarkable.” He also recognised the bowler’s hard work by pointing out, “It (yorker) is the hardest ball to bowl but also the most effective one. That skill comes with practice. Bhuvi’s increased his pace as well over the last two years and that has helped him be effective with the new ball as well as the end of the innings.”
What’s next for Bhuvi?
Even though the BCCI has been pushing the announcement of the Indian squad for the upcoming Champions Trophy owing to a dispute with the ICC, it is a given that Bhuvneshwar Kumar would walk into the side keeping the swing conducive conditions in England and his recent form. He has also been a constant selection in the Test squad of 15 if not the playing eleven with skipper Kohli utilising his services smartly in conditions suitable to him. His recent performances in the IPL is bound to result in a call-up for the national T20 side as well.