Fast bowlers are generally marked by certain characteristics: strong physique, bigger and fitter frame, and a marked aggression with a stern face. But cometh December 2012 a slender young boy enters Indian cricket swinging the ball both ways and clocking 120’s Kmph. Bhuvaneshwar Kumar seemed to be a very unlikely figure for a fast bowler. And naysayers would have believed he wouldn’t last to make an impact.
Everything was to change with his debut in a high-pressure T20 game against Pakistan. Bhuvi remained undeterred and ended up with a dream debut scalping 3 wickets and leading India to Victory. Within the next five days, we witnessed more of this swinging sensation befuddling Mohammed Hafeez with an in-swinging yorker in the very first delivery of the match. Bhuvaneshwar had announced himself and how!
Before he made his debut there was already quite a stir about this kid. He was the only bowler to bowl out Sachin Tendulkar for a first ball duck in first-class cricket! Well it’s not always that you restrict the God of cricket for nothing. There was something special about him we all knew.
Bhuvi has continued proving himself time and again whether be his scintillating 6-fer at Lord’s or showing up with matching winning performances. In the recent test season even after being in and out of the team, he’s always had a comeback.
Bhuvi has shown staggering improvement with his skills in the past 3 years. Numbers don’t narrate the entire tale. But, adding an accurate yorker with an increase in pace along with implementation of beautiful pickings from his IPL team mate Dale Steyn does. Bhuvi has risen as one of the best death bowlers, for the rest he was always the best new ball man around.
In a tournament like IPL where everyone and anyone is just raring to smack bowlers out of the park, Bhuvi boasts of a career economy of 6.98. His T20I stats are not any different with a slim 6.68.
But if you assume that he’s just blocking runs and acting as the defensive one you’d be wronged for Bhuvi ended up with 23 scalps to his name in 17 matches standing tall as the leading wicket taker last year. And this year it’s no different as he already has a fifer with 15 scalps in just 6 matches so far.
May be it has been Warner’s aggression or Laxman’s advice or may be the Indian Team experience that has rubbed on him but, Bhuvaneshwar has already set the stage blazing. And well we seem to have spotted a strong contender for MVP IPL 2017, what’s your say on it?