It was heartbreaking to see Kuldeep Yadav warm the bench during the first Test against England in Chennai as a last-minute injury to Azar Patel led to Indian national team management opting to play Shahbaz Nadeem and Washington Sundar along with Ravichandran Ashwin.
However, with Washington Sundar and Shahbaz Nadeem failing to give the required support to Ravichandran Ashwin in the first innings of the match, former Australia player Brad Hogg has said that India should not leave Kuldeep Yadav out of the playing XI if they play three spinners in the upcoming Test matches against England.
The visiting team dominated the first two days of the Chennai Test, as Joe Root hit 218, Ben Stokes made 82 and Dom Sibley slammed 87 runs. Shahbaz Nadeem returned figures of 2/167 in 44 overs, while Washington Sundar went wicketless in his 26 overs, giving away 98 runs.
Brad Hogg was asked on Twitter by a fan about the current situation with the Indian team’s makeup and the former Australia chinaman bowler replied that India should not be thinking of leaving out Kuldeep Yadav if they play three spinners in upcoming matches.
“I hope he (Shahbaz Nadeem) has a good day. I feel they can’t leave Kuldeep out again if they go with three spinners,” Hogg said.
I hope he has a good day. I feel they can't leave Kuldeep out again if they go with three spinners. https://t.co/VcppNeePXw
— Brad Hogg (@Brad_Hogg) February 8, 2021
Kuldeep Yadav’s home record begs his inclusion in the Indian playing XI:
The chinaman bowler from Uttar Pradesh, Kuldeep Yadav has a brilliant record at home, ever since making his debut against Australia in Dharamshala in 2017. He picked four wickets in his first outing with the Indian team and since then, in 3 Tests at home, Kuldeep Yadav has picked 14 wickets at an average of 24.29. His strike rate is close to 40, while his best figures at home are 5/57.
His last appearance for India with the red-ball came in Sydney in 2019 when he returned figures of 5/99 against Australia as India dominated the home side in a rain-affected drawn Test. The left-arm chinaman bowler had a tough 2020 with lackluster performances for his IPL franchise Kolkata Knight Riders in the 2020 edition in UAE.
Though he was named in the Indian squad for the Australia tour, he managed just one game, an ODI match in Canberra, where he picked up 1/57 in 10 overs. Despite India suffering many setbacks in terms of injuries throughout the four-match Test series in Australia, Kuldeep Yadav was asked to warm the bench.
Even when Ravichandran Ashwin hurt his back in Sydney Test and was ruled out of the Brisbane Test match, India opted to hand Washington Sundar a debut, instead of giving Kuldeep Yadav a chance.