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Fast bowling is a rare talent in India. To win a Test match, quality fast bowlers is needed to take twenty wickets. India always struggle in this aspect as their fast bowlers showed their potential at their early days, but later on they lost their form and never come back with as same sharpness as his initial years.
They are not less in number, they bowled with pace, bounce and seam but one injury ruled them out from the squad and ruined the career.
After Kapil Dev, there was one Zaheer Khan who had performed for India till 2011. Like other Indian fast bowlers he was also ruled out from the team due to injuries.
Zaheer Khan had always felt the paucity of another consistent bowlers who could assist him. None of these bowlers last long. They were sensation at their own time, but never reached their potential.
Here is a list of TEN Indian bowlers who came and gone:
VRV Singh: VRV made his Test debut in 2002 at Antigua, West Indies. Ian Bishop said, “VRV is only a baby; to me he is starting to bowl better with every game.” A product of India U-19 with fresh burst of energy and speed was one of the fast bowling prospect India had in 2005/2006. A tall and open chested Punjabi promised that he would never compromise with his speed. His first class record were outstanding. He has 121 wickets in 29 matches. He played seven Ranji matches in which he took 34 wickets with best seven for 75. Indian selectors called him for the Sri Lanka ODI series in 2005. He did not qualify the fitness Test, ruled out from the series. Indian selector did not lose faith on him. But, he injured his landing foot. He recovered and called for England series in 2006. He made his debut in Jamshedpur, he was bowling with sheer pace, and accuracy was nowhere. He conceded 33 runs in five overs.
However, he bowled well in EurAsia Cup, got 11 wicktes in that series. VRV was out of competitive cricket for three years.
Munaf Patel: Patel played the World Cup 2011, he was the third highest wicket taker for India. Bowling coach Eric Simons regard him as the unsung hero of India’s World Cup victory.
He is one of the Indian fast bowlers who began to fade away after a good start. Munaf was a discovery of then national selector Kiran More, who has seen him bowl fast at Ikhar in 2002, a little known town of Gujrat. More sent him straight to the MRF pace foundation in Chennai to train under TA Sekhar and Dennis Lillee. Indian fans already knew about the fastest thing to come.
Munaf made his debut against England in March 2006 at Mohali. He got 7 wickets in the match. But, since then he lost his speed alarmingly due to injuries. He later on played in New Zealand in 2009. But, he was not considering for the home series anymore as injury damaged his severely.
Munaf could spearhead India’s bowling unit, but his constant injury never allow his career to flourish.
Sudeep Tyagi: He is now 27, he has chance to do well and comeback in the senior team. He played four ODIs for India, but took mare three wicket all along. He was dropped in 2010, is not call for national team anymore.
A tall, lively seamer from Uttar Pradesh was instrumental for UP’s Ranji Trophy final. But, back fracture ruled him out of IPL from Chennai Super Kings squad. Having recovered from injury he played for India A in a tri series comprised of Australia A and New Zealand A. In the same year he finally played the IPL for Chennai where he castled AB de Villiers.
Abhimanyu Mithun: The 6 feet 2 inch bowlers had never thought he would become a bowler. Till 17 he was striving for athletics and discuss throw, even did not bowl a single ball. He was 20 when he made his Ranji debut for Karnataka in 2009/2010. He was called for South Africa series, did not feature in playing eleven. He made his debut during the Sri Lanka series. Since he has become replacement of injured bowlers in the team.
He failed to full fill the promise he made in front of Ray Jennings of Bangalore coach in IPL.
Lakshmipathy Balaji: He made a forgettable ODI debut in 2002 against West Indies. The lanky medium pacer was the leading wicket taker during the historic 2003/2004 Pakistan tour. He helped India to win the Tests series and ODI series. He took 12 wickets during that three match Test series.
A stress fracture ruled him out of cricket in 2005. Only the IPL kept him alive. In 2008 he made a comeback, but his sharpness with the ball faded away. His IPL performances impressed selectors to call him for World T20 series in 2012 against New Zealand. He was performing well, took 10 wickets in five matches. But, once again he lost from the radar.
Ashok Dinda: Once Alan Donald said he found him in Dinda. Hailing from Naichanpur village of Medinipur district of West Bengal. His talent was spotted by Atal Dev Burman. He made his debut in Ranji in 2005/2006 for Bengal. His performance in Irani Trophy helped him to get a place in national team. His first T20 international wicket was Sanath Jayasuriya. He made his ODI debut against Zimbabwe in 2010, and last played in 2013 against England at Rajkot. His performance did not impress Indian selectors, so they dropped from international duty.
Jaydev Undkat: He is now 23 years old. He made his Test debut at Centurion, South Africa, that was one off Test he played so far. The porbandar bowler played for India U19 in New Zealand World Cup.
He was spotted by his coach Ram Odedra during the Duleep Sinh School of Cricket. His World Cup performance in New Zealand earned him a IPL contract with Kolkata Knight Riders. He impressed Wasim Akram who considered him as the budding Indian talent. He featured in India A team during the tour of England. His match winning 13 for 103 against West Indies A earned him a place in South Africa series. In 2012-2013 he had a successful tour in New Zealand. He has two four wickets haul with 14.30 average. He enjoyed a largely successful campaign with Royal Challengers Bangalore, finishing joint-second on the team’s wicket-takers list. He made ODI debut in 2013 July in Zimbabwe and in the same year he played his last match against West Indies.
Pankaj Singh: The 30 year old tall Rajasthan Ranji team pacer has played two Tests and one ODI for India. He was another promising pacer during his U-19 days, but faded away with the time. His brilliant Ranji performance for Rajasthan with 21 wickets at 20.95 in 2006 earned him a place in India A team for 2007 Zimbabwe and Kenya tour. He took 18 wickets in Tests in Zimbabwe and ODIs in Kenya. Injured Sreesanth and Munaf had opened an opportunity for him to tour Australia with senior team. He played his one off his ODI against Zimbabwe, when selectors decided to rest many senior players.
Vinay Kumar: Vinay Kumar is a bowler in the Venkatesh Prasad mould- relying more on out swinger, leg cutters and accuracy, than on outright pace. He was picked for Karnataka Ranji team in 2004-2005. In 2007 he has become the second highest wicket taker in Ranji tournament. In 2009-2010 he took enviable 46 wickets. His domestic performance earned him an IPL contract with Royal Challengers Bangalore. He performed well for the IPL franchise. National selectors called him for 2010 World T20. He was on the fringes of the India’s limited-overs sides since and was the most experienced of the quick bowlers in the side for the home series against West Indies in late 2011. He finally got his chance in Tests for the Australia tour, following injuries to Praveen Kumar and Varun Aaron, and made his debut in that format in Perth. His performance was not up to the mark as he took only 38 wickets in 31 matches. He was dropped. His one off Test was forgettable.