England v India, 2nd Investec Test, Lord's, 2nd day July 18, 2014

Bhuvneshwar thanks Praveen's advice

25

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'More to come tomorrow' - Bhuvneshwar

They could be twins. They amble up off a small run, keep the seam upright, use the wrist, swing the ball each way, were born in Meerut, play for Uttar Pradesh, love bowling in England, and are handy batsmen lower down the order. Except Bhuvneshwar Kumar is the calmer, more subdued, version of Praveen Kumar. On a day that Bhuvneshwar kept India in the Test with 4 for 46 in 23 testing overs, he acknowledged Praveen's contribution to his success.

The last time India came to England, Praveen was India's most effective bowler on a horror tour. It was only natural that before embarking on this journey, Bhuvneshwar gave Praveen a call, who is sidelined now for what seems forever.

"Praveen Kumar is my idol and I have watched him a lot," Bhuvneshwar said. "I had a talk with him before I came here. He is like a big brother for me, and we play together for the same team. He still helps me with my bowling."

Praveen would only have reinforced Bhuvneshwar's basics: bowl at the stumps, bowl full, let the pitch and the atmosphere in England take full effect. With assistance from the other two quicks and despite a wicketkeeping slip letting Gary Ballance score a hundred, India put together a quite excellent day in the field: bowling with discipline, moving the ball, not letting England get away.

When asked if this was the best bowling day with spinners not involved in it that he had been part of, Bhuvneshwar responded in affirmative.

"The wicket became a bit easier for batsmen after the first session," Bhuvneshwar said. "We bowled in the right areas and kept them quiet. We did well to keep Ballance quiet, even his hundred was not an easy one. We didn't give any easy runs."

The jury might still be out on which of the Kumars is a better bowler, but Bhuvneshwar has already shown better batting technique and temperament than Praveen. With two fifties in the first Test and 36 important runs here, Bhuvneshwar is leading not only India's bowling but batting averages too.

"I have been enjoying batting in England," Bhuvneshwar said. "The partnership with Ajinkya was really satisfying. The ball was moving around, and we were in a bad situation, had lost seven wickets. So, from that point of view, it was a good effort and I think a better effort than in the first Test."

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on July 20, 2014, 2:53 GMT

    Undoubtedly Bhuvi is the best of Indian seamers today. Hey Man he can swing on any flat pitch, so why he can't in England. Today I remembered Ashish Winston Zaidi who is also a very good bowler and never tried by India. Poor selection policy. India will be better adviced to invest in good swing bowlers of 130 kph than Ishant and Varun Aaron of mediocre quality. Atleast Umesh yadav was more reliable than Ishant and he should have been playing here. You have forgotten that Umesh is also hailing from UP.

  • on July 19, 2014, 15:07 GMT

    Replace Ishant with Pankaj Singh, Jadeja with Ashwin

  • on July 19, 2014, 13:58 GMT

    Actions speak louder than words !!! So goes the saying and without a trace of doubt , Bhuvi has proved it to some extent. His batting performance for a so called tailender was better than some of the leading specialist batsmen in our team. - kohli, Dhawan, etc.

    For all you know he could be the next KAPIL DEV in the making. His gutsiness, willingness, determination, grit and a sense of purpose says it all. Given the time, chance and with some luck he could even be the FUTURE INDIA CAPTAIN. Well if we keep dreaming further can we or MAY we at some distance see him as either GARY SOBERS or KALLIS in the making !!! ......... Who knows cricket is a game of uncertainties, Even Wasim Akram the greatest left arm swing bowler of all time has scored 257 runs in a single innings !!!

  • on July 19, 2014, 7:42 GMT

    I think in next test match, India should play with this tem: If Pitch would be Slow: 1. Aswin should replace Binny. 2. Pandey should replace Shami. If pitch would be fast: 1. Ashwin should replace Jadeja. 2. V.Aaron should replace shami. 3. I.Pandey should replace Binnny.

  • on July 19, 2014, 7:21 GMT

    Praveen and Bhuvi...I love these 2 to death. They have the biggest hearts in all of Indian cricket. They run in until the sun goes down and will run themselves into the ground if the captain demands it. Best of all they will do it with a smile on their face as they have shown in this and the previous series. It would be a dream to one day see them bowling in tandem in a test match.

    On a side note...poor Cook cant catch a break. Last time it was Praveen that was knocking over his off pole all the time and this time its his apprentice.

  • on July 19, 2014, 6:23 GMT

    If Binny is not bowling approximately 10 - 12 miserly overs in an England innings, his bowling is not worth much to India. 10 overs in an innings at 3.5+ can be bowled by a combination of Murali Vijay, Virat Kohli & Rohit Sharma, replace Binny with a better bat. ...Having said that, the Indian 2nd Innings should be the last option for Dhawan - if he fails, replace him with Gambhir who being less flashy should have come in ahead of Dhawan as an opener in English conditions in any case.

  • on July 19, 2014, 6:02 GMT

    This is a quite apt comparison as these two bowlers are strikingly similar. Swing bowling has always been India's strength rather than raw pace. Good that Bhuvneshwar has better temperament if we compare him with Praveen. We hope that Dhoni and management utilizes him well. Calm folks like Bhuvi and Rahane would be the key to India's future in cricket and especially test cricket. His last three scores must provide Bhuvi the confidence and he should recognize his worth in the team and should go further up on this rather than being complacent. He has examples as Praveen (a good swing bowler) and Irfan (good swing bowler and reasonable batsman) which he should keep in mind whenever complacency hovers him.

  • Naresh28 on July 19, 2014, 5:28 GMT

    What little we saw of Praveen in the IPL showed he is a capable bowler. He should have been there in England. Bhuvi needs another wicket taker at the other end. So far he has been the lone striker. Its time we changed the others and introduce one or two other pacers. Jadeja is not getting the wickets.

  • on July 19, 2014, 4:56 GMT

    Praveen Kumar could swing the ball more prodigiously than Bhuvi. However, Bhuvi is temperamentally the stronger of the two, and definitely the better batsman. Praveen was more a tailender, who could sometimes tonk the ball. Bhuvi looks set for a long career.

  • here2rock on July 19, 2014, 1:04 GMT

    Good young cricketer, shows too much obsession with a speed gun, he is the one India should nourish as an all rounder.

  • on July 20, 2014, 2:53 GMT

    Undoubtedly Bhuvi is the best of Indian seamers today. Hey Man he can swing on any flat pitch, so why he can't in England. Today I remembered Ashish Winston Zaidi who is also a very good bowler and never tried by India. Poor selection policy. India will be better adviced to invest in good swing bowlers of 130 kph than Ishant and Varun Aaron of mediocre quality. Atleast Umesh yadav was more reliable than Ishant and he should have been playing here. You have forgotten that Umesh is also hailing from UP.

  • on July 19, 2014, 15:07 GMT

    Replace Ishant with Pankaj Singh, Jadeja with Ashwin

  • on July 19, 2014, 13:58 GMT

    Actions speak louder than words !!! So goes the saying and without a trace of doubt , Bhuvi has proved it to some extent. His batting performance for a so called tailender was better than some of the leading specialist batsmen in our team. - kohli, Dhawan, etc.

    For all you know he could be the next KAPIL DEV in the making. His gutsiness, willingness, determination, grit and a sense of purpose says it all. Given the time, chance and with some luck he could even be the FUTURE INDIA CAPTAIN. Well if we keep dreaming further can we or MAY we at some distance see him as either GARY SOBERS or KALLIS in the making !!! ......... Who knows cricket is a game of uncertainties, Even Wasim Akram the greatest left arm swing bowler of all time has scored 257 runs in a single innings !!!

  • on July 19, 2014, 7:42 GMT

    I think in next test match, India should play with this tem: If Pitch would be Slow: 1. Aswin should replace Binny. 2. Pandey should replace Shami. If pitch would be fast: 1. Ashwin should replace Jadeja. 2. V.Aaron should replace shami. 3. I.Pandey should replace Binnny.

  • on July 19, 2014, 7:21 GMT

    Praveen and Bhuvi...I love these 2 to death. They have the biggest hearts in all of Indian cricket. They run in until the sun goes down and will run themselves into the ground if the captain demands it. Best of all they will do it with a smile on their face as they have shown in this and the previous series. It would be a dream to one day see them bowling in tandem in a test match.

    On a side note...poor Cook cant catch a break. Last time it was Praveen that was knocking over his off pole all the time and this time its his apprentice.

  • on July 19, 2014, 6:23 GMT

    If Binny is not bowling approximately 10 - 12 miserly overs in an England innings, his bowling is not worth much to India. 10 overs in an innings at 3.5+ can be bowled by a combination of Murali Vijay, Virat Kohli & Rohit Sharma, replace Binny with a better bat. ...Having said that, the Indian 2nd Innings should be the last option for Dhawan - if he fails, replace him with Gambhir who being less flashy should have come in ahead of Dhawan as an opener in English conditions in any case.

  • on July 19, 2014, 6:02 GMT

    This is a quite apt comparison as these two bowlers are strikingly similar. Swing bowling has always been India's strength rather than raw pace. Good that Bhuvneshwar has better temperament if we compare him with Praveen. We hope that Dhoni and management utilizes him well. Calm folks like Bhuvi and Rahane would be the key to India's future in cricket and especially test cricket. His last three scores must provide Bhuvi the confidence and he should recognize his worth in the team and should go further up on this rather than being complacent. He has examples as Praveen (a good swing bowler) and Irfan (good swing bowler and reasonable batsman) which he should keep in mind whenever complacency hovers him.

  • Naresh28 on July 19, 2014, 5:28 GMT

    What little we saw of Praveen in the IPL showed he is a capable bowler. He should have been there in England. Bhuvi needs another wicket taker at the other end. So far he has been the lone striker. Its time we changed the others and introduce one or two other pacers. Jadeja is not getting the wickets.

  • on July 19, 2014, 4:56 GMT

    Praveen Kumar could swing the ball more prodigiously than Bhuvi. However, Bhuvi is temperamentally the stronger of the two, and definitely the better batsman. Praveen was more a tailender, who could sometimes tonk the ball. Bhuvi looks set for a long career.

  • here2rock on July 19, 2014, 1:04 GMT

    Good young cricketer, shows too much obsession with a speed gun, he is the one India should nourish as an all rounder.

  • on July 19, 2014, 0:37 GMT

    I had stopped cricket due to recent 2-3 years performance, but Pujara, Rahanae, Bhuvi exciting prospects of Indian cricket team made me watch the game. Better if Gauti plays in cricket is not flashy or chance game, they have to remember how Sri lanka beat England few days back and learn , even they had raw, new bowlers yet they utilised better. Dont drop catches in slip. Better Indian main bowlers bowl less preserving them is imp as injury can mar their carrer.

  • spinkingKK on July 19, 2014, 0:00 GMT

    India's best bowling attack in England should be : Praveen Kumar, Bhuvi Kumar, Umesh Yadav, Varun Aaron, Amit Mishra. Also, have Irfan Pathan as the left arm/All-rounder option and Ishant Sharma as the tallish/hit the deck option in reserve. Why Praveen, Irfan and Mishra doesn't find a place in the squad?

  • TRAM on July 18, 2014, 23:35 GMT

    Ashwin should come in place of Shami. Even if Ashwin takes 0 wkts same as Shami, he would be a far better batter. More importantly he would help finish the 80 overs quicker than Shami and get to the 2nd new ball in less time. Similarly I would say RSharma come in place of Dhawan. Even if Rohit does not make more runs than Dhawan, he would field better and his off spin could help rest the fast bowlers. Binny should stay in the 11 since Dhoni did not give him fair chance yet with new ball. Unbelievably today ISharma shared the new ball with Bhuvi. It should have been Binny who is another swing bowler like Bhuvi. Finally, Kholi should try some swing bowling since he has bowled in ODIs. Dont know why Dhoni does not use such options. Over working Bhuvi is bad.

  • kalyanbk on July 18, 2014, 23:12 GMT

    The Indian bowlers who are likely to be most effective in English Conditions are Praveen Kumar, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar and Sandeep Sharma. They are genuine swing bowlers. Really miss Praveen Kumar on this tour.

  • Nampally on July 18, 2014, 20:55 GMT

    It would have been great to see 2 Kumars- one at each end. One Kumar was handful for England. Put another one like him- It means double trouble. Yes Praveen bowled brilliantly in England in a one-man show in 2011 tour. He swung the ball & got wkts. too. It is great to see in Bhuvi the same talent as in praveen. I hope he polishes off the England side early on Day 3 to give India a small lead. Bhivi is the best Pace bowling all rounder based on his fine batting & excellent bowling . He has been the Indian Hero in both the Tests. Actually on the stats. & numbers of the First test, I would have given Bhuvi MOM any day- Anderson's figures were not comparable. Again in this Test his bowling figures are better than Anderson's. He also brought the Indian total to a respectable one with Rahane in a 90 run partnership. How I wished Bhuvi had a great foil like Praveen at the other End ! Why can't Shami or Ishant be that kind of Foil? Well Done Bhuvi. You made India proud !

  • on July 18, 2014, 20:41 GMT

    Sigh...how long can a man stay injured. Its like Praveen Kumar is the cursed jewel of Indian cricket. Its been 2 years since he has had a proper series in Indian colours. The last I saw him he was blowing apart the Sri Lankas on their home turf. But since then every time prior to a comeback...like 2 weeks before he's managed to get himself injured. His loss is probably the biggest blow to Indian bowling for last 3 years.

    He was the unsung hero of the previous England series where all hell broke loose for us. He came in and became the unsung hero in the 2008 CB series finals alongside Sachin and Harbhajan. Still remember Ponting and Clarke's off poles cartwheeling away in the first ODI. INDIAN CRICKET NEEDS THIS MAN BACK.

  • Nagamooto on July 18, 2014, 20:38 GMT

    This does beg the question, why was Praveen not selected for this tour too? We all know he was India's best bowler when last here, is suited to bowling in English conditions in terms of being a bowler who swings it both ways with decent control at a medium-fast sort of pace and can contribute with the bat too! India have got their bowling unit wrong! It should have been Praveen and Bhuvi (both opening), Umesh Yadhav (for his quicker pace over the rest), Mohammed Shammi/Ishant and Ashwin. The batting should have been Vijay, Gambhir (despite his constantly whiny looking expressions), Pujara, Kohli, Rahane and Dhoni.

  • SpaMaster on July 18, 2014, 20:19 GMT

    (Contd.) Not everyone who contributes to Indian cricket is a superstar and there are many personalities like Praveen Kumar who contribute in their own way, even if it is from the backstage, immensely.

  • SpaMaster on July 18, 2014, 20:18 GMT

    I think you are being a bit harsh on Praveen Kumar relating to his temperament. Praveen Kumar had genuine mental health issues. Someone with his condition needs others support, not demeaning criticisms. Sure there was some fault with him as it always is with many of these psychotic conditions but they are more disadvantaged than most people. Anyway, Praveen Kumar's temperament is not what took him out of the team. It was injury, lay-off and further injuries that derailed his career. The fact that he is able to inspire such a promising young Indian lad and that he is considered as his idol and has been modeled around, he has given quite a bit to Indian cricket already. Praveen Kumar had lot of unfortunate physical and mental injuries that hurt him. I am very glad Bhuvnesh has lavishly praised and acknowledged him when for many people mentioning Praveen is not good PR and they want hush-hush it. Even Mumbai Indian showed faith in him and he repaid that faith in heaps and bounds.

  • on July 18, 2014, 20:10 GMT

    Sandeep Sharma have the capacity to perform like Bhuvi, but with bat not that much better like Bhuvi.

  • Jackpot6 on July 18, 2014, 20:07 GMT

    The real spearhead of India is Bhuvi not Shammi & Ishant was never. I am still baffled what he is doing in this team, Umesh Yadav is bull with raw pace but 0 technique; so any good batsmen will take him dearly. Praveen was indeed a good bowler with genuine swing ability; he lost but he will be back...

  • Unmesh_cric on July 18, 2014, 19:53 GMT

    Good on Bhuvi to acknowledge Praveen. Praveen Kumar with the new ball was a delight to watch. He was not express by any means, but the amount of swing he achieved (both ways) was astonishing sometimes. Not only in England, but he bowled very well in the CB series in Australia (2008) too. He trouble most batsmen with new ball. He was not that effective with older ball, much like Bhuvi. When it comes to pure swing bowling, both Praveen and his disciple Bhuvi are pleasure to watch.

  • inswing on July 18, 2014, 19:45 GMT

    Very good performance by Bhuvi. Praveen should have been here. India's slip catching leaves much to be desired. All of Dhawan, Kohli, or Ashwin (when he plays) routinely drop catches. With a mediocre to weak bowling attack, grabbing the few chances you get is crucial. The Ballance miss between Dhoni and Dhawan will likely cost India the Test. Even if it doesn't, this type of lapses in the slip should not be forgotten as "part of the game".

  • bhushanB on July 18, 2014, 19:24 GMT

    I wanted three players to play well on this series and cement their places for the upcoming 2-3 years.... Pujara, Rahane and Bhuvi.. Pujara is already set... Happy to see Rahane and Bhuvi performing well... Even in the SA series, I was very disappointed that Bhuvi was left out after just one ordinary game.... He would have done well there..... And everyone knows the case with Rahane.. how long he has to sit out due to the other Favorites...

    Now just need Pujara to get back to what he does best.... and on a personal note I will be happy... Ofcorse the main job at hand is to push for a Test win.....which feels like an eternal wait..

  • Triple_A on July 18, 2014, 19:21 GMT

    Good lad, lets his bowling do the talking. He repeatedly shows that pace is not everything. Hopefully, he wont be worked too hard into the ground in the coming years. He has the potential to lead the attack for many years if his work load is managed properly. Only flaw is that he probably wont be too effective in Indian conditions where the ball rolls to the wicketkeeper from Ball 1. He will need to learn the art of reverse swing to remain a threat in the subcontinent, and it wonderful that Shami is right there to teach him. He and Shami can be the new Srinath and Prasad for India in the years to come!

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  • Triple_A on July 18, 2014, 19:21 GMT

    Good lad, lets his bowling do the talking. He repeatedly shows that pace is not everything. Hopefully, he wont be worked too hard into the ground in the coming years. He has the potential to lead the attack for many years if his work load is managed properly. Only flaw is that he probably wont be too effective in Indian conditions where the ball rolls to the wicketkeeper from Ball 1. He will need to learn the art of reverse swing to remain a threat in the subcontinent, and it wonderful that Shami is right there to teach him. He and Shami can be the new Srinath and Prasad for India in the years to come!

  • bhushanB on July 18, 2014, 19:24 GMT

    I wanted three players to play well on this series and cement their places for the upcoming 2-3 years.... Pujara, Rahane and Bhuvi.. Pujara is already set... Happy to see Rahane and Bhuvi performing well... Even in the SA series, I was very disappointed that Bhuvi was left out after just one ordinary game.... He would have done well there..... And everyone knows the case with Rahane.. how long he has to sit out due to the other Favorites...

    Now just need Pujara to get back to what he does best.... and on a personal note I will be happy... Ofcorse the main job at hand is to push for a Test win.....which feels like an eternal wait..

  • inswing on July 18, 2014, 19:45 GMT

    Very good performance by Bhuvi. Praveen should have been here. India's slip catching leaves much to be desired. All of Dhawan, Kohli, or Ashwin (when he plays) routinely drop catches. With a mediocre to weak bowling attack, grabbing the few chances you get is crucial. The Ballance miss between Dhoni and Dhawan will likely cost India the Test. Even if it doesn't, this type of lapses in the slip should not be forgotten as "part of the game".

  • Unmesh_cric on July 18, 2014, 19:53 GMT

    Good on Bhuvi to acknowledge Praveen. Praveen Kumar with the new ball was a delight to watch. He was not express by any means, but the amount of swing he achieved (both ways) was astonishing sometimes. Not only in England, but he bowled very well in the CB series in Australia (2008) too. He trouble most batsmen with new ball. He was not that effective with older ball, much like Bhuvi. When it comes to pure swing bowling, both Praveen and his disciple Bhuvi are pleasure to watch.

  • Jackpot6 on July 18, 2014, 20:07 GMT

    The real spearhead of India is Bhuvi not Shammi & Ishant was never. I am still baffled what he is doing in this team, Umesh Yadav is bull with raw pace but 0 technique; so any good batsmen will take him dearly. Praveen was indeed a good bowler with genuine swing ability; he lost but he will be back...

  • on July 18, 2014, 20:10 GMT

    Sandeep Sharma have the capacity to perform like Bhuvi, but with bat not that much better like Bhuvi.

  • SpaMaster on July 18, 2014, 20:18 GMT

    I think you are being a bit harsh on Praveen Kumar relating to his temperament. Praveen Kumar had genuine mental health issues. Someone with his condition needs others support, not demeaning criticisms. Sure there was some fault with him as it always is with many of these psychotic conditions but they are more disadvantaged than most people. Anyway, Praveen Kumar's temperament is not what took him out of the team. It was injury, lay-off and further injuries that derailed his career. The fact that he is able to inspire such a promising young Indian lad and that he is considered as his idol and has been modeled around, he has given quite a bit to Indian cricket already. Praveen Kumar had lot of unfortunate physical and mental injuries that hurt him. I am very glad Bhuvnesh has lavishly praised and acknowledged him when for many people mentioning Praveen is not good PR and they want hush-hush it. Even Mumbai Indian showed faith in him and he repaid that faith in heaps and bounds.

  • SpaMaster on July 18, 2014, 20:19 GMT

    (Contd.) Not everyone who contributes to Indian cricket is a superstar and there are many personalities like Praveen Kumar who contribute in their own way, even if it is from the backstage, immensely.

  • Nagamooto on July 18, 2014, 20:38 GMT

    This does beg the question, why was Praveen not selected for this tour too? We all know he was India's best bowler when last here, is suited to bowling in English conditions in terms of being a bowler who swings it both ways with decent control at a medium-fast sort of pace and can contribute with the bat too! India have got their bowling unit wrong! It should have been Praveen and Bhuvi (both opening), Umesh Yadhav (for his quicker pace over the rest), Mohammed Shammi/Ishant and Ashwin. The batting should have been Vijay, Gambhir (despite his constantly whiny looking expressions), Pujara, Kohli, Rahane and Dhoni.

  • on July 18, 2014, 20:41 GMT

    Sigh...how long can a man stay injured. Its like Praveen Kumar is the cursed jewel of Indian cricket. Its been 2 years since he has had a proper series in Indian colours. The last I saw him he was blowing apart the Sri Lankas on their home turf. But since then every time prior to a comeback...like 2 weeks before he's managed to get himself injured. His loss is probably the biggest blow to Indian bowling for last 3 years.

    He was the unsung hero of the previous England series where all hell broke loose for us. He came in and became the unsung hero in the 2008 CB series finals alongside Sachin and Harbhajan. Still remember Ponting and Clarke's off poles cartwheeling away in the first ODI. INDIAN CRICKET NEEDS THIS MAN BACK.