It is reported that the experience Ishant Sharma was the first choice bowler in the opening Test match against South Africa but the lanky fast bowler woke up with a severe headache and had to make way for Bhuvneshwar Kumar. Bhuvi grabbed the opportunity with both his hands and bowled a fine opening spell in the match.
Kumar reduced the Proteas to 12 for 3 which left the hosts in all kind of trouble. Unfortunately, the swing master didn’t get much support from the other end and he finished with the figures of 4 for 87. The Uttar Pradesh bowler played a supporting actor role to Hardik Pandya with the bat and scored an indispensable 25 in the first innings to get India back in the match.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar was not the first choice bowler in the first Test?
Ishant Sharma had a good series against Sri Lanka when he gained confidence. The tall fast bowler also had an impressive Ranji season for Delhi which helped him in his bowling.
A report said as quoted by TOI, “On the morning of January 5, the first day of the Test match in Cape Town, Ishant Sharma woke up with a severe headache, bordering on the feverish. In a couple of hours, he was expected to buckle-up for the game scheduled 10.30 am local time. Things just did not fall into place. Left to choose between Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Umesh Yadav, the team management settled for the former.”
Bhuvneshwar Kumar also showed great resistance in the second innings and scalped 2 for 33 and scored an unbeaten 13 with the bat. He and Ashwin gave a slight ray of hope to the Indian team when they put together an alliance of 49 runs.
There is no denying the fact that the Indian team would have added more misery had they decided to drop Bhuvneshwar Kumar who was the pick of the bowlers for the team. Kumar can get the ball to swing both ways and he is lethal in foreign conditions. There were some peculiar selection decisions from the Indian team and this one would have also added to the same.