The Indian Cricket Team which is in a pathetic form off late is still searching an answer for a genuine pace bowling all-rounder since the retirement of Legendary Kapil Dev. Many such players including Joginder Sharma, JP Yadav and Sanjay Bangar made their debut and some like Irfan Pathan created a huge impression before fading out. But none could replace the big shoes of Kapil Dev. It is not an easy task for a young player coming into the side and straightaway replace the void left by the Haryana Hurricane.
The latest addition to the search for All-Rounder is Uttar Pradesh pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar. He has shown some enormous promise in the matches he played and didn’t fail to impress the team management and the fans. He had a sensational debut year in International Cricket followed by India’s disastrous tour of England in which the Indians were hammered 3-1 by the hosts. But this tour might have a huge impact on the future of Bhuvneshwar, who was one of the four bright stars for Team India and even won the Indian Player of the Series award. The tour to England will make Bhuvneshwar more matured whenever he takes the field next time for his national side.
Batting at number 8 and finishing as the fourth highest run getter for his time in an entire series clearly shows he did a fantastic job throughout the series. Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who is playing Test Cricket overseas for the first time, didn’t show any nerves and performed beyond expectation. Scoring three fifties in his first four innings, Bhuvneshwar Kumar starred with the bat and sometimes, raised eyebrows over his batting position.
Bhuvneshwar scored 247 in ten innings with an average of 27.44, the stats which are well above average for a player who often bats with tailenders. He was at ease while facing the English bowlers who troubled the Indian batsmen a numerous times in the 5 match test series. By seeing the way he batted, sometimes Bhuvneshwar looked far better than few frontline batsmen.
With the ball in his hand, he troubled the English batsmen with his swing and accuracy. He was the second leading wicket-taker in the series behind James Anderson. Bhuvneshwar Kumar scalped 19 wickets from just 7 innings (England batted only once in three matches) with an average of 26.3 per wicket.
He made the red cherry talk as he stamped his authority over Sam Robson throughout the series and even made Alastair Cook look like a school boy in the first few innings. It can be concluded that Bhuvneshwar Kumar has a bright future in his hands and has the potential to become the next big thing in Indian Cricket. If he continues to perform like this, then it is safe to say an All-Rounder is evolving from the shadows of Kapil Dev.
For that he needs to maintain his consistency and the team management should not overuse him. His workload should be managed wisely, unlike his usage in the series which will prevent him from sustaining injuries and lose his way like Irfan Pathan. Bhuvneshwar has the potential to become the next big thing, but the team management has a bigger role in carrying the future of Bhuvneshwar Kumar.