Vinay Kumar March 25, 2014

'I handle pressure better now'

Vinay Kumar talks about Karnataka's historic treble, how his bowling has improved, and his thoughts on making a comeback to the India side
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"It is in the mind that you can win or lose a game" © ESPNcricinfo Ltd

Karnataka's R Vinay Kumar became the first captain in the history of Indian domestic cricket to lead a team to victory in the Ranji Trophy, Irani Cup, and Vijay Hazare Trophy (the domestic one-day tournament) in the same year. Despite being in and out of the Indian team, Vinay has worked hard on his bowling and leadership, upgrading his own skills and also playing a role in the growth of other players in his team.

You are the only captain to have won three domestic titles in the same year. How proud are you?
It feels really great. We did not know how big an achievement this is. Our success mantra has been to take one game at a time. After winning the Vijay Hazare we thought, let us now aim for the next: Syed Mushtaq Ali [domestic T20].

At what point during the Ranji season did you grow confident that this was going to be a different year?
We lost to Mumbai in Mysore in the 2009-10 Ranji Trophy final by six runs and I could never forget that pain. The next year we lost in the semi-finals (to Baroda), and the following year we lost in the quarter-finals [to Haryana]. Last year we again failed to get past the quarter-finals, losing to Saurashtra.

We asked ourselves some tough questions: whether we lacked in our preparations or whether we were not taking the responsibility. At the beginning of this season we told ourselves we had the team but we were lacking in some small areas. So we decided all of us needed to take some extra responsibility. The belief and faith became stronger with every match, and we kept winning from whatever position we found ourselves in.

In one of our final league matches, Mumbai needed 282 for an outright victory. We were playing on our home ground. It was a low-scoring match. Before entering the final day, we had a chat. We were playing on the centre pitch, which can be dicey. The cracks open by the fourth day. If we wanted to win the Ranji Trophy we had to get them out within 180 - that was our target. The way we went about things and performed and got Mumbai all out, I realised that this season we could actually win the title.

Karnataka were the only team to win seven matches in this season's Ranji Trophy. What were the areas that you stressed on?
We stressed to the batsmen that they [needed to] take the team to safe positions. In the 2011 final in Mysore against Mumbai, Manish Pandey was playing with such freedom, and in the dressing room we were making jokes and thinking we would win the match easily. But as soon as he got out, we folded. I have never been tired of reminding him that only if he had batted for another 15 overs we could definitely have won the match. Such small factors play a decisive role.

This year Robin [Uthappa] took more responsibility for helping the batsmen and making them understand the importance of playing according to the situation and how to battle different conditions. He stressed on playing one ball at a time, as he felt that would help regain the focus. It is in the mind that you can win or lose a game.

In the quarter-final against Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka were one bowler short in the second innings after HS Sharath suffered a shoulder injury in the field. Abhimanyu Mithun, your fast-bowling partner, recollects the moment when you walked to him and said that for Karnataka to make the semi-final, he and you had to deliver.
That match was as big as the Mumbai match. UP were also one bowler short after RP Singh got injured early in the first innings. I told Mithun we have better bowlers than the opposition, considering both of us have played for India. If we bowl even 90% to our strengths, to our potential, then very few batsmen can tackle us. This is the day we need to deliver.

He was bowling short and it was annoying him. It was important for me to point out to him to bowl to his fields. For example, take the wicket of Mohammad Kaif in the first innings. As soon as he came in to bat I got a short fine leg and square leg. I know Mithun, when he gets a rhythm, can bowl lethal incutters with extra pace. Kaif usually tries to jab at such balls. So I set a particular field, but Kaif left a ball that came in and was bowled.

"This domestic season I have learned a lot about myself and how to bounce back from difficult situations. I really want to come back to the Indian team"

In fact Venkatesh Prasad, the UP coach, says he was waiting for you two to get tired as you were bowling longer spells. He was impressed by your determination, consistency and accuracy.
That was a quarter-final. It was not a league match. If we had not performed in that match then again we would have been out of the tournament. I did not want that to happen. That day we were never going to be tired despite bowling long spells. If you have the hunger to want to get them all out, you will not be bothered by exhaustion.

What about your own bowling? What did you work on this season?
I am at my best as a bowler. I have lost about 3kg. When you look fit, it adds to your self-confidence. It has helped me run quicker in my bowling stride. My rhythm comes from my run-up, so losing weight definitely helped in many ways.

You said earlier that you have improved as a captain because you have become better at following your instincts. But you seem to have also got better at assessing conditions.
Possibly. In the semi-final, against Punjab, we were playing in Mohali in really cold conditions. I had a catch in my back, which hampered movement in my left shoulder. I was advised to take an MRI scan. But I did not want to take any chances. That was because during the Mumbai match we had conceded the lead by barely ten runs. At that point I was not on the field because I had felt a niggle in my calf and had to visit the hospital for a scan. I had sat out for more than three hours in the process. If I had stayed at the ground I could have stopped Mumbai from taking the lead.

In Mohali, I asked the physio to do whatever and get me back on the field. It did not matter whether I bowled or not. I just wanted to be there in the middle. We had elected to bowl but Punjab's openers were taking advantage of some wayward bowling by the likes of Ronit More. On a fast pitch More was bowling lengths one bowls on a flat pitch and leaking boundaries. I told him the ball needed to hit the handle. He immediately had one of the openers caught behind.

After a while I decided to bowl off a short run-up. The first ball was good, even though I did not finish my follow-through. I got a wicket in a couple of balls. I got the feel-good factor soon. I was bowling at 80% but that was fine because my sole aim was to hit specific spots on the pitch that would help cut the ball. The pitch was damp in the morning session, so if you pitched the ball in the right areas it would leave some tiny marks. Once the pitch was dry you just needed to pitch on those spots. I managed to get five wickets for one run. It was a dream spell.

Usually every captain has one or two go-to players in the team. In your case do you feel you are your team's go-to man?
In bowling, I agree. If there is a difficult situation I will take the ball immediately, because I know if I take a wicket or two that will help the team. Take the crucial match during the zonal stage of the Vijay Hazare, when we tied with Hyderabad. In the Powerplay I got three wickets in two overs and that was vital. In the Irani Cup, Dinesh Karthik and Harbhajan Singh were playing really well for Rest of India. Their partnership was building fast. I had not bowled much in that phase and decided to come back, and took Bhajji's wicket. Next over Robin took a superb catch to dismiss Karthik. The match was in our grasp soon.

Fitness is an important element of your game. Prasad points out a good example during the Challenger Trophy final: You ran out Virat Kohli midway into your follow-through. Do you remember that?
Virat had played [the ball] towards midwicket. I was into my follow-through leaning to my left, but midway I stopped, changed my body position, jumped across the pitch, intercepted the ball, and threw it in one action to break the stumps. I had run out Unmukt Chand against Delhi during the league stage in a similar fashion.

If I do not do a fitness training session every day, I miss something. I start feeling guilty. It has become a routine, and probably that is because of the culture I have observed in Karnataka cricket. When I made my debut for Karnataka I would see [Anil] Kumble, [Sunil] Joshi, Rahul [Dravid], Venky [Prasad], [Javagal] Srinath train regularly. If I had to reach their level, I had to train.

Are you disappointed not being part of the Indian team?
I would say yes. You can see, I am always striving to perform and take a wicket. But one bad match in Bangalore (against Australia)...

What happened that evening?
When a batsman can score 200 runs, at least one bowler will go for 100. Most of the bowlers went for 80-85 runs. In hindsight I could have bowled more yorkers. Instead I stuck to pitching more back of a length, even if I was getting hit for a six. Usually I would bowl a slower delivery or a yorker the next ball. Ironically I had been doing that the whole series [bowling short-of-a-length deliveries], making breakthroughs in Powerplay overs. I think I was the highest wicket-taker among the fast bowlers.

Has MS Dhoni spoken to you about your bowling?
Like I feel I am my team's go-to bowler, I feel - and I might be wrong - he sees me as one of his go-to bowlers. He has thrown me the ball during the Powerplay and death overs. Only if a captain has confidence will he give a bowler such responsibility. Once, after the 2011 ODI series in England, he told me I bowl well and have variations but I can get predictable. He had asked me to work on that area. I always make sure I bowl against him during the team training because he is a dangerous batsman. If you can restrict him, that gives you extra confidence. So yes, I remain confident about my chances of making a comeback.

I have matured enough to handle the pressure better now. This domestic season I have learned a lot about myself and how to bounce back from difficult situations. I want to really come back to the Indian team, so I'm waiting.

You have played one Test. How ready are you now to take the opportunity whenever it comes?
My performances with the red ball in both the Ranji and Irani tournaments were very good. In Perth I played as a fourth bowler on my Test debut. Eric Simons, India's bowling coach then, told me that my duty was to give less than three runs an over. Straight away I was on the back foot: I just needed to try and bowl dot balls.

Next time I get a chance, I will enter the ground with a different mindset. I will bowl more like a strike bowler. In the ODI series I was a totally different bowler. Even Dhoni told me he sensed I had not bowled 100% in the Perth Test match.

You will agree that pace is not your biggest weapon. Do you have to rely on consistency, accuracy and control instead?
I cannot bowl 140kph. I can't do that. I have to perform within my limits. I can bowl between 130-135kph, but the margin of error is very less. I have to be consistent and move the ball both ways. I have now also developed the inswinger, so I can definitely trouble the batsmen. Hopefully I will be part of the Indian squad for the World Cup, since it is happening in Australia and New Zealand, where the pitches and conditions suit my style of bowling. These three to four years are my peak ones and important for me. That makes me positive.

Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • TimeKiller on March 26, 2014, 17:33 GMT

    Come on guys.. 57 wickets from the last 12 matches (in both list A and first-class formats), how can you argue with that? Lack of pace? What is the use of pace if there is no control? Look at Varun Aaron, utter rubbish bowler, look at his stats, just pathetic. Please understand that there are different forms of bowling, pace is just one of them and it does not work everywhere. Vinay did bowl badly against Australia, but then who didn't, every single Indian bowler was horrible in that series. Vinay bowled beautifully against England in the ODI series in India, you guys don't remember that, selective amnesia I see. Whenever Vinay has been selected to the Indian team, he has been asked to bowl in the worst situations. Let Vinay open the bowling for India and see how the wickets will tumble. Let him play in England and see how much better he is, than Ishant. When the conditions are suitable for swing bowling, Vinay is the best bowler in India at the moment.

  • rogues13 on March 25, 2014, 23:08 GMT

    So according to him, it is ok to give for him to give 100+ runs in 9 overs because others were also expensive (none even close to vinay though)??? That should be reason enough to not select him.....In that Match, India scored almost 60 more runs, still Vinay was the only one with 100+ to his name...

  • rick333 on March 25, 2014, 22:47 GMT

    I remember in the past on his debut season, he had given an interview to cricinfo claiming that he is ready to take the charge as the leader of the attack. Opposition had attacked him left, right and center all right. confidence is good over confidence is not. He may be successful in domestic circuit where skill level is low but in the international arena against class and flamboyant batsmen he has very little in his arsenal to even beat their bat let alone picking a wicket.

  • on March 25, 2014, 21:29 GMT

    Vinay should try coaching. He seems to have man management skills and should help young upcoming bowlers. I am tired of seeing guys like him bowl for India. If his best is 130K then on an average he will be bowling 120s which in international cricket is easy pickings. One swing bowler that right now is Bhuvneshwar Kumar they need to show more patience with Yadav, Varun, Bumrah and other younger pace bowlers

  • on March 25, 2014, 19:38 GMT

    The problem with playing Vinay Kumar is that by now all international batsmen are lying in wait for him to show up. He is like the 6th bowler batsmen wait to target.

  • crkt4evr on March 25, 2014, 16:58 GMT

    ERIC SIMMONS!!! for heaven's sakes does any 1 tel such thing to a bowler playing his debut test match???

  • cheguramana on March 25, 2014, 16:57 GMT

    Very happy to see Vinay doing so well in domestic matches. A fast bowler captain is a rare sight on Indian grounds. All the best Vinay and hope you continue to prosper - either within India or outside !

  • Karunk on March 25, 2014, 11:04 GMT

    Pls publish this. Statistics of Indian fast bowlers in ODI's. (from your site):

    B Kumar Matches: 35 Runs given:1381 Wickets: 37 Average:37.32 Economy: 4.74 SR:47.2 Ishant sharma Matches: 72 Runs given: 3207 Wickets: 102 Average: 31.44 Economy: 5.72 SR: 32.9 Shami: Matches: 29 Runs given: 1448 Wickets: 50 Average: 28.96 Economy: 5.82 SR: 29.8 Aaron Matches: 8 Runs given: 393 Wickets: 11 Average: 35.72 Economy: 6.64 SR: 32.2 Umesh Yadav Matches: 28 Runs given: 1308 Wickets: 30 Average: 43.6 Economy: 6.07 SR: 43.0 Vinay Kumar Matches: 31 Runs given: 1423 Wickets: 38 Average: 37.44 Economy: 5.94 SR: 37.7

  • Joy_slg on March 25, 2014, 11:00 GMT

    In that match in Bengaluru, V. Kumar leaked 102 runs off 9 overs and none of the others went fo 80-85 runs...So obviously he doesn´t have a great memory. R.Jadeja gave away 73 runs which was the second highest with respect to runs given and that too in 10 overs. The rest of the bowlers were in the 50 odd range. He neither has pace nor has the variation to examine top class batsmen. It will be very difficult for him to get selected, let alone secure a place for national duty.

  • on March 25, 2014, 10:48 GMT

    Dear VinayKumar Congrats your Ne-verse die Attitude, you definitely get a chances up coming series and World Cup 2015, god is great blessing disguise, you are great Captain and Sending the Karnataka Creicket Team in the Peak Level and at Indian Domestic Tournament and same as Barcelona FC and Bayren Munich F.C team Level

  • TimeKiller on March 26, 2014, 17:33 GMT

    Come on guys.. 57 wickets from the last 12 matches (in both list A and first-class formats), how can you argue with that? Lack of pace? What is the use of pace if there is no control? Look at Varun Aaron, utter rubbish bowler, look at his stats, just pathetic. Please understand that there are different forms of bowling, pace is just one of them and it does not work everywhere. Vinay did bowl badly against Australia, but then who didn't, every single Indian bowler was horrible in that series. Vinay bowled beautifully against England in the ODI series in India, you guys don't remember that, selective amnesia I see. Whenever Vinay has been selected to the Indian team, he has been asked to bowl in the worst situations. Let Vinay open the bowling for India and see how the wickets will tumble. Let him play in England and see how much better he is, than Ishant. When the conditions are suitable for swing bowling, Vinay is the best bowler in India at the moment.

  • rogues13 on March 25, 2014, 23:08 GMT

    So according to him, it is ok to give for him to give 100+ runs in 9 overs because others were also expensive (none even close to vinay though)??? That should be reason enough to not select him.....In that Match, India scored almost 60 more runs, still Vinay was the only one with 100+ to his name...

  • rick333 on March 25, 2014, 22:47 GMT

    I remember in the past on his debut season, he had given an interview to cricinfo claiming that he is ready to take the charge as the leader of the attack. Opposition had attacked him left, right and center all right. confidence is good over confidence is not. He may be successful in domestic circuit where skill level is low but in the international arena against class and flamboyant batsmen he has very little in his arsenal to even beat their bat let alone picking a wicket.

  • on March 25, 2014, 21:29 GMT

    Vinay should try coaching. He seems to have man management skills and should help young upcoming bowlers. I am tired of seeing guys like him bowl for India. If his best is 130K then on an average he will be bowling 120s which in international cricket is easy pickings. One swing bowler that right now is Bhuvneshwar Kumar they need to show more patience with Yadav, Varun, Bumrah and other younger pace bowlers

  • on March 25, 2014, 19:38 GMT

    The problem with playing Vinay Kumar is that by now all international batsmen are lying in wait for him to show up. He is like the 6th bowler batsmen wait to target.

  • crkt4evr on March 25, 2014, 16:58 GMT

    ERIC SIMMONS!!! for heaven's sakes does any 1 tel such thing to a bowler playing his debut test match???

  • cheguramana on March 25, 2014, 16:57 GMT

    Very happy to see Vinay doing so well in domestic matches. A fast bowler captain is a rare sight on Indian grounds. All the best Vinay and hope you continue to prosper - either within India or outside !

  • Karunk on March 25, 2014, 11:04 GMT

    Pls publish this. Statistics of Indian fast bowlers in ODI's. (from your site):

    B Kumar Matches: 35 Runs given:1381 Wickets: 37 Average:37.32 Economy: 4.74 SR:47.2 Ishant sharma Matches: 72 Runs given: 3207 Wickets: 102 Average: 31.44 Economy: 5.72 SR: 32.9 Shami: Matches: 29 Runs given: 1448 Wickets: 50 Average: 28.96 Economy: 5.82 SR: 29.8 Aaron Matches: 8 Runs given: 393 Wickets: 11 Average: 35.72 Economy: 6.64 SR: 32.2 Umesh Yadav Matches: 28 Runs given: 1308 Wickets: 30 Average: 43.6 Economy: 6.07 SR: 43.0 Vinay Kumar Matches: 31 Runs given: 1423 Wickets: 38 Average: 37.44 Economy: 5.94 SR: 37.7

  • Joy_slg on March 25, 2014, 11:00 GMT

    In that match in Bengaluru, V. Kumar leaked 102 runs off 9 overs and none of the others went fo 80-85 runs...So obviously he doesn´t have a great memory. R.Jadeja gave away 73 runs which was the second highest with respect to runs given and that too in 10 overs. The rest of the bowlers were in the 50 odd range. He neither has pace nor has the variation to examine top class batsmen. It will be very difficult for him to get selected, let alone secure a place for national duty.

  • on March 25, 2014, 10:48 GMT

    Dear VinayKumar Congrats your Ne-verse die Attitude, you definitely get a chances up coming series and World Cup 2015, god is great blessing disguise, you are great Captain and Sending the Karnataka Creicket Team in the Peak Level and at Indian Domestic Tournament and same as Barcelona FC and Bayren Munich F.C team Level

  • tarun_arun on March 25, 2014, 10:35 GMT

    to me,the worst bowler from any country to have played international cricket....the sight of his name in the player sheet before the match was enough to make me switch off my tv

  • India_boy on March 25, 2014, 10:10 GMT

    NO !!! Please, we beg you, no more V Kumar. Please! Have mercy on Indian fans. For those who are supporting him(can't believe such a person exists), recall there are Indian bowlers who bowl good at least during some stage of the match eg. B Kumar, look at his skills, small frame, small height but generous swing, bowled the most econ spell in T20 against WI. Ishant Sharma also gets hit for runs, but he also takes wickets, even if once in a blue moon. He also bowled superbly in the first SA test and both NZ tests. Shami is another bowler who uses his brains when things are going awry. You gave an eg. of Morkel, but you failed to read cricinfo commentary that he is the same guy who made Aus dance to his tunes, he had one bad day, but Vinay does not even have 1 good day!!!! V Kumar I hope you are reading this , please don't even think of making a comeback! cricinfo i beg u to publish this

  • j4884 on March 25, 2014, 9:14 GMT

    Umesh Yadav is bowling really well in the ongoing Deodhar Trophy match. He is making a top class batsman like Pujara dance with pace and swing on Indian pitches. So far 4 overs for 10 runs with great variety - bouncers, yorkers, slower balls, inswingers and outswingers at very good pace. He seems to have improved his accuracy too. Selectors should get him back in ODI's now and he will be an asset for the world cup.

  • Karunk on March 25, 2014, 9:08 GMT

    @j4884 I agree. Slower bowlers get hit after ball loses its shine. The so called faster bowlers get hit even when ball is new if they don't have accuracy. Yesterday, Morkel got hit for 50 runs in 3 overs. He almost turned the match in NZ favour when Taylor hit him for 3 sixes. Morkel bowls 145+ and he is faster than Steyn. So just pace does not help. Along with pace, bowler needs to have swing, accuracy, variation and intelligence. In your list, they are faster than Vinay but do not possess other qualities. In another few months, Shami will drop down to 130K+ Regarding grooming, I don't think any other board spends as much as India on fast bowlers. Of course, it may not be in organized and scientific way. MRF pace academy is there for decades now and great fast bowler like Lillee was heading the academy. Vinay is not suited for test cricket. But he is a better bowler in ODI & T20 as compared to others.

  • j4884 on March 25, 2014, 8:32 GMT

    @Karunk India has seen enough of 125 - 130K bowlers who get smashed around once the ball gets old and stops moving around and they dont have the pace to bowl reverse swing. Its high time we put our trust in fast bowlers. The reason doesn't have express bowlers is because they are not backed by the team management. Once they go for a few runs they are encouraged to cut down the pace and go for accuracy and in the process they deteriorate further. India needs to have a pool of fast bowlers like Yadav, Shami, Aaron, Rahul Shukla and Jasprit Bhumrah to name a few and groom them into better fast bowlers...until we have a good fast bowlers India will always struggle to win test matches abroad.

  • Biso on March 25, 2014, 8:05 GMT

    Dear Vinay Please spare us the nightmares. No not again. Dear selectors ! The thought of having Vinay in the Indian team should be treated as blasphemy Please banish that thought altogether. Let Vinay excel for Karnataka. All the best to you Vinay, so long you do not harbour any thoughts of getting into the Indian team. The fans and the team deserve better.

  • Karunk on March 25, 2014, 6:17 GMT

    @j4884 It was a sad sight to see Vinay getting hit all over. But every India fast bowler has gone through it. He is not alone. Our fast bowlers start at 140+ and then it drops to 130+ in next 1-2 years. Longevity is important for them. Regarding experience and chances, following are the statistics (international matches) taken from Cricinfo site. Vinay: ODI's: 31 Runs: 1423 Wickets: 38 Average: 37.44 Eco: 5.94 SR: 37.7 Umesh ODi's: 28 Runs: 1308 Wickets: 30 Average: 43.6 Eco: 6.07 SR: 43.0

    At international level, pace helps but is not the only criteria. Everybody cannot be Steyn, Johnson or Malinga. Dhoni has his favourites and at the same time, carries expectation of 1billion + people to win every match. He can't afford 'long rope club' with everyone. Yadav has played 28 ODI's which is not less. I am not against Yadav. He needs to spend more time at domestic level, be successful and then make a come back. His domestic performance this season is not exceptional.

  • on March 25, 2014, 6:02 GMT

    He should not be given any more opportunities. He does not have the potential. The best this guy can do is contribute for Karnataka. Don't even try to comeback to the Indian team. People were having nightmares when you were part of the Indian team.He does not have a good bowling arm, neither does he have pace. And line-length is too far-fetched concept for him. India should select him when they want the opponents to win.

  • siddhartha87 on March 25, 2014, 5:56 GMT

    Vinay Kumar is a proven failure in international cricket.He gets wickets only from mis hit slogs.

  • j4884 on March 25, 2014, 5:17 GMT

    @Karunk Even Steyn and Johnson used to erratic when they started out. But they were backed by the team management and given lots of chances and they have become great bowlers. Pace cannot be taught its a natural talent to bowl fast but rest of the things like swing and accuracy will only come by playing matches. Even Wasim Akram has said that when he started playing only thing he knew was bowling fast and he learned swing and reverse swing after he played lot of matches. Regarding Vinay Kumar it was a sad sight seeing him trundling at Perth of all places at 125K and getting hammered by Warner. Umesh Yadav is the best Indian test bowler right now. He is a wicket taking bowler and has the ability to reverse the ball. Look at the test match he played against England before getting injured. He has now come back from injury and has improved his accuracy too. Right time to give him a chance in ODI. He along with Shami, Aaron and Bhuvi will do well in Australia...

  • kkminos on March 25, 2014, 5:17 GMT

    This Guy is just waste , i very well remember how he was murdered and clueless during Australia match ; he is lying , nobody gave more than 7.5 runs per over and this fellow made 102 runs in 54 balls. He should keep on playing for Karnataka only.

  • j4884 on March 25, 2014, 4:35 GMT

    Vinay Kumar has got enough chances in the indian team and has not performed well. He is a performer in the domestic scene but due to his lack of pace he gets butchered in ODI's. Its time to invest in youngsters like Varun Aaron and Umesh Yadav who have the potential. Aaron has showed he can bowl yorkers at pace which will be very handy in world cup and Umesh Yadav was the best test bowler before he got injured. But lost his place in the playing XI to Ishant Sharma who is poor bowler but a Dhoni favorite. Yadav and Aaron are not finished products but will only improve if they are given enough chances. But sadly these two talented pacers are not part of the "LONG ROPE CLUB" of Dhoni so will not be given half of the chances that Dhoni's favorites like Ishant, Rohit, Ashwin and Jadeja got. They will be dropped after couple of bad games and will be warming the benches for a long time like Mishra....

  • Karunk on March 25, 2014, 4:34 GMT

    Apart from pace, Vinay has everything in his armoury. Who has pace in the Indian team? Both Aaron and Yadav bowl 140+ but concede more than 6 runs per over whenever, given a chance. India can't produce tear away fast bowlers who can bowl 145+ consistently. Indian pace bowling attack will be in the range of 125-135K. Indian fans need to accept that. He is intelligent, matured and has more variations. Better to have him in the team when he is in great form. He takes wickets regularly, provides breakthrough, good fielder and useful bat.

  • Great_Chucker on March 25, 2014, 4:12 GMT

    he's lost 3 kg to bowl at 130k...is this guy serious?even Jadeja is sometimes faster than this guy..and please play for Karnataka only

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  • Great_Chucker on March 25, 2014, 4:12 GMT

    he's lost 3 kg to bowl at 130k...is this guy serious?even Jadeja is sometimes faster than this guy..and please play for Karnataka only

  • Karunk on March 25, 2014, 4:34 GMT

    Apart from pace, Vinay has everything in his armoury. Who has pace in the Indian team? Both Aaron and Yadav bowl 140+ but concede more than 6 runs per over whenever, given a chance. India can't produce tear away fast bowlers who can bowl 145+ consistently. Indian pace bowling attack will be in the range of 125-135K. Indian fans need to accept that. He is intelligent, matured and has more variations. Better to have him in the team when he is in great form. He takes wickets regularly, provides breakthrough, good fielder and useful bat.

  • j4884 on March 25, 2014, 4:35 GMT

    Vinay Kumar has got enough chances in the indian team and has not performed well. He is a performer in the domestic scene but due to his lack of pace he gets butchered in ODI's. Its time to invest in youngsters like Varun Aaron and Umesh Yadav who have the potential. Aaron has showed he can bowl yorkers at pace which will be very handy in world cup and Umesh Yadav was the best test bowler before he got injured. But lost his place in the playing XI to Ishant Sharma who is poor bowler but a Dhoni favorite. Yadav and Aaron are not finished products but will only improve if they are given enough chances. But sadly these two talented pacers are not part of the "LONG ROPE CLUB" of Dhoni so will not be given half of the chances that Dhoni's favorites like Ishant, Rohit, Ashwin and Jadeja got. They will be dropped after couple of bad games and will be warming the benches for a long time like Mishra....

  • kkminos on March 25, 2014, 5:17 GMT

    This Guy is just waste , i very well remember how he was murdered and clueless during Australia match ; he is lying , nobody gave more than 7.5 runs per over and this fellow made 102 runs in 54 balls. He should keep on playing for Karnataka only.

  • j4884 on March 25, 2014, 5:17 GMT

    @Karunk Even Steyn and Johnson used to erratic when they started out. But they were backed by the team management and given lots of chances and they have become great bowlers. Pace cannot be taught its a natural talent to bowl fast but rest of the things like swing and accuracy will only come by playing matches. Even Wasim Akram has said that when he started playing only thing he knew was bowling fast and he learned swing and reverse swing after he played lot of matches. Regarding Vinay Kumar it was a sad sight seeing him trundling at Perth of all places at 125K and getting hammered by Warner. Umesh Yadav is the best Indian test bowler right now. He is a wicket taking bowler and has the ability to reverse the ball. Look at the test match he played against England before getting injured. He has now come back from injury and has improved his accuracy too. Right time to give him a chance in ODI. He along with Shami, Aaron and Bhuvi will do well in Australia...

  • siddhartha87 on March 25, 2014, 5:56 GMT

    Vinay Kumar is a proven failure in international cricket.He gets wickets only from mis hit slogs.

  • on March 25, 2014, 6:02 GMT

    He should not be given any more opportunities. He does not have the potential. The best this guy can do is contribute for Karnataka. Don't even try to comeback to the Indian team. People were having nightmares when you were part of the Indian team.He does not have a good bowling arm, neither does he have pace. And line-length is too far-fetched concept for him. India should select him when they want the opponents to win.

  • Karunk on March 25, 2014, 6:17 GMT

    @j4884 It was a sad sight to see Vinay getting hit all over. But every India fast bowler has gone through it. He is not alone. Our fast bowlers start at 140+ and then it drops to 130+ in next 1-2 years. Longevity is important for them. Regarding experience and chances, following are the statistics (international matches) taken from Cricinfo site. Vinay: ODI's: 31 Runs: 1423 Wickets: 38 Average: 37.44 Eco: 5.94 SR: 37.7 Umesh ODi's: 28 Runs: 1308 Wickets: 30 Average: 43.6 Eco: 6.07 SR: 43.0

    At international level, pace helps but is not the only criteria. Everybody cannot be Steyn, Johnson or Malinga. Dhoni has his favourites and at the same time, carries expectation of 1billion + people to win every match. He can't afford 'long rope club' with everyone. Yadav has played 28 ODI's which is not less. I am not against Yadav. He needs to spend more time at domestic level, be successful and then make a come back. His domestic performance this season is not exceptional.

  • Biso on March 25, 2014, 8:05 GMT

    Dear Vinay Please spare us the nightmares. No not again. Dear selectors ! The thought of having Vinay in the Indian team should be treated as blasphemy Please banish that thought altogether. Let Vinay excel for Karnataka. All the best to you Vinay, so long you do not harbour any thoughts of getting into the Indian team. The fans and the team deserve better.

  • j4884 on March 25, 2014, 8:32 GMT

    @Karunk India has seen enough of 125 - 130K bowlers who get smashed around once the ball gets old and stops moving around and they dont have the pace to bowl reverse swing. Its high time we put our trust in fast bowlers. The reason doesn't have express bowlers is because they are not backed by the team management. Once they go for a few runs they are encouraged to cut down the pace and go for accuracy and in the process they deteriorate further. India needs to have a pool of fast bowlers like Yadav, Shami, Aaron, Rahul Shukla and Jasprit Bhumrah to name a few and groom them into better fast bowlers...until we have a good fast bowlers India will always struggle to win test matches abroad.