Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar believes that India should move on from Bhuvneshwar Kumar as the pacer is struggling with his form and fitness. Gavaskar also suggested a like-for-like replacement in form of Deepak Chahar who can swing the new ball and can contribute with the bat down the order.
South Africa beat India in both matches comprehensively as Indian bowlers failed to make an impression in the series. Indian bowling picked only 6 wickets in the 2 matches in the series. Bhuvi went wicketless in both matches as he conceded the runs with an economy of more than 7. In the second match, he was taken away from the attack after just one over in the first spell.
“Intention should be to look at what is going to be your core team for the 2023 World Cup”- Sunil Gavaskar
“I think it’s time to look at Deepak Chahar now. He is younger, pretty much the same kind of bowler, and bats handily down the order,” Gavaskar spoke to India Today.
Gavaskar pointed out that Bhuvi had been struggling with his form for a while. In IPL 2021, he picked only 6 wickets in 11 games with an economy of around 8. And it’s not just numbers he couldn’t find his old swing which made him famous in the early part of his career.
“Bhuvi has been a tremendous servant of Indian cricket but in the last year or so, even in franchise level T20 cricket, he has been expensive. Not so much at the start of the innings but towards the end. He used to bowl those brilliant yorkers and slower deliveries, but those are not working anymore. That can happen, the opposition is studying you all the time and they will know how to be prepared for it. So maybe it is time to look at somebody else,” said Gavaskar.
Gavaskar opined that India should start preparing for the world cup as there isn’t much time left for the mega event. He added that India should form the core and that core should play as many matches together as possible.
“Now the intention should be to look at what is going to be your core team for the 2023 World Cup in India. We have got a good 17-18 months to do that. The core team have got to get the maximum number of ODIs. There are matches coming against West Indies, Sri Lanka and later on against England. That is where you have got to give them the maximum number of matches so they are well prepared for the World Cup,” said Gavaskar.
After this series, India will play a limited-overs series against West Indies consisting 3 ODIs and 3 T20Is at home starting on February 6. Then Sri Lanka will visit India to play a series of 2 Tests and 3 T20Is.