India’s Bhuvneshwar Kumar has been a standout bowler for the country in white-ball cricket. A sensation in swing bowling in the shorter formats of the game, Kumar has been a one-of-a-kind player, who was unplayable during the peak of his career.
However, the veteran has suffered a huge blow in his performance due to several injuries. These injuries have affected the effectiveness of his bowling in various aspects like pace and accuracy. His performance in IPL has also gone down the hill with the two-time Purple Cap winner having his worst economical display (ER:7.97) in the 2021 edition of IPL.
Bhuvneshwar’s form a concern
Bhuvneshwar’s performance has slightly gone down skill over the years. In the upcoming series against the Windies, Bhuvi is selected only in the T20 squad. It is mainly because of poor performance in the recent series in South Africa, where he went wicketless at an economy rate of 7.28 in the ODIs.
Over the years, Bhuvi has gone down with his consistency and effectiveness. In the first three years in T20I, Bhuvi picked 11 wickets at an average of 17.1. He was a breakthrough bowler because of his ability and skills to swing the new ball in both directions.
However, his recent numbers have been affected by various factors, and between 2015 and 2018, he took 10 wickets in 14 innings at an average of 37.83 and a strike rate of 21.77. In the last three years, he picked up wickets at an average of one wicket every match (32 wickets in 32 matches), but his dot ball percentage went down to 50.13 from 55.1 in his first three years. It has been a major problem for Kumar in recent years, and his ability to pick wickets at a minimal economy rate has reduced.
Bhuvneshwar’s experience: A boon or a bane?
Bhuvneshwar’s experience has come to the fore for the nation in most situations. His ability to swing the new ball in the first six overs has been a blessing for the team. Bhuvneshwar’s experience and skill with the white ball come to the play in both the first six overs and the last four overs of the innings.
Although he hasn’t been at his best in recent years, his record in the power play is phenomenal. Kumar has 26 wickets at an economy of 5.84 and a dot ball percentage of 60.7 in the first six overs.
Even though he has been such a great bowler at the start of the game, his numbers aren’t great in the last four overs. But, Kumar has improved his skills as a white-ball bowler, bowling slower balls and yorkers. The experienced lad can mix and match at the death, which should be fruitful for India in the upcoming series against the Windies.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar brings with him a wealth of experience, which India will need in the upcoming series against the mighty West Indies. With another T20 World Cup scheduled this year, Kumar has to bring out the vintage version of himself to gain a place in the squad and to make an impact in the matches before the World Cup. The veteran has to find ways to cement a place in the squad with upcoming players like Avesh Khan and Harshal Patel ready to take the opportunities that come their way.