Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal slowed down Sri Lanka in the middle overs, which helped them to restrict the hosts to a total of 262/9 in 50 overs. The Indian spin duo showcased signs of a return to form when bowling together in the first ODI against Sri Lanka on Sunday at the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo. It has been a while since the two bowlers, jointly known as ‘Kul-Cha’ of Indian cricket, had played a game together.
Their forms have dipped over the past few months which has led to both of the spinners being in and out of the team. But on Sunday in the first ODI, the two put their best foot forward, as they both picked up two wickets each.
Kuldeep Yadav Backs Yuzvendra Chahal As The Spin Duo Performed Well Playing After A Long Time
The duo slowed down Sri Lanka in the middle overs, which helped them to restrict the hosts to a total of 262/9 in 50 overs. India captain Shikhar Dhawan scored an unbeaten 86 as the visitors won the match by 7 wickets, chasing down the total in the 37th over. Speaking at the post-match press conference, Kuldeep Yadav said that he was happy to bowl alongside Yuzvendra Chahal and find his rhythm back.
“Very happy that after a long time Chahal and I got to play together for the team. We are comfortable with each other and we back each other. We both share inputs on the field whenever it is required, the bonding is nice between us both. We performed well together, we played after a long time and it orders well for the side,” Kuldeep was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
“I was trying to vary my pace as the wicket was dry in the first innings. The wicket offered some assistance for the spinners, I was varying my pace depending on the batsmen. Very happy with the way team performed in this match,” Kuldeep added.
The chinaman bowler bowled nine overs, conceding 48 runs but most importantly, took two wickets off beautiful deliveries in the same over. Yuzvendra Chahal too had a good day, taking a wicket off his very first ball and then sending back the Sri Lankan skipper Dasun Shanaka for 39 runs. He ended with figures of 2/52.
Kuldeep Yadav: Rahul Dravid Backed And Motivated As He Asked Not To Worry About The Result
The left-arm bowler further explained how coach Rahul Dravid helped him gain confidence and motivation before the encounter.
“Nervousness is always there when you step out to the field. Rahul Sir backed me and he motivated me. We talked a lot and he told me to enjoy my bowling and not worry about the result. I am happy that I performed well. Obviously, you are nervous when you play cricket after a long time, the way the team performed, I am very happy with it,” Kuldeep said.
“We have come to play cricket here. We are lucky that we are getting to play cricket. There are many youngsters in the side, we are not worried about what anyone is saying. We are just here to enjoy our cricket. It is difficult to stay in bubbles, when you are not playing there are doubts that can creep in. It’s sport at the end of the day, someone gets the chance and someone doesn’t,” he added.
In ODIs, Kuldeep Yadav averaged 17.78 with the ball in 2018 picking as many as 45 wickets in 19 games but has picked only 6 scalps in 5 ODIs in 2020 and 2 scalps in 3 ODIs in 2021 averaging above 50 both years. In T20Is his average is an extraordinary 13.77 but he has got limited opportunities.