West Indies v India, 1st Test, Kingston, 2nd day June 21, 2011

'It didn't feel like my first Test' - Praveen Kumar

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"Khilake toh dekho (Give me a chance and then see)," Praveen Kumar had said around two years ago when asked about the perception that he is just an ODI bowler. He asked to explain that perception, and the explanation was given: That he doesn't have pace, that he can't be effective with the old ball, and that he can be restrictive but not wicket-taking. The eyebrows rose, a frown dented his face as he said "Khilake toh dekho. I bowl so many overs in the Ranji Trophy and don't I take wickets?" Not many were convinced. Even Jaidev Unadkat, without any experience in first-class cricket, played a Test ahead of him. It must have left him gutted.

All he offered today on the issue after a fine spell in the afternoon to go through the West Indies middle order was: "My job is just to bowl well." Praveen doesn't smile on a cricket ground. He swings the ball often, stares at the batsmen sometimes and lingers on in the middle of the pitch at times with hands on his hips. He looks as if he is angry with the world. Beyond the boundary, though, he smiles if he knows you. "Hasao mat (Don't make me laugh)," he says as he walks into the press meet today.

"It felt good. The ball was swinging both ways. I didn't feel like I was playing my first Test. There were no nerves. I just went according to the plan. I just wanted to concentrate on line and length and for me the ball should swing." It did today. Ask Adrian Barath. The ball curved towards the line of the stumps and then jagged away and took the edge of a batsman who was past his fifty.

All that ODI experience wouldn't have hurt and Praveen was in rhythm today. If "shape" is the mantra for Raina, "rhythm" is the magic word for Praveen. "Sometimes it comes in two overs; sometimes it takes four," Praveen said. "Here, since it's hot, you have to build that rhythm quickly."

Darren Bravo was his next. Again, the ball moved away fractionally to clip the outside edge, before he had Brendan Nash, caught off a leading edge in the slips. Praveen was flowing and a five-for on debut looked within his reach, but he was prevented from bowling further in the innings as he ran on to the danger area thrice. "I was just focussing on what I am bowling and didn't focus on running on pitch and stuff. This is the first time it's happened in my career. It's good that I learned it in my first innings itself."

Some might yet not be convinced that he is a Test bowler. What'll happen if the conditions don't suit him? What if he doesn't get the ball to move? Only time will tell. More empirical evidence is needed, of course. He has managed to move the ball in domestic cricket in Indian conditions, though. Many felt he had to lift his pace. "He has to increase his pace a bit and not lose his swing obviously," former India allrounder Manoj Prabhakar, who called him a 'jadugar' (magician), had told ESPNcricinfo more than two years ago. "Then he can trouble international batsmen consistently. I faced such a problem in my early days. I am not talking about express pace or sacrificing it for swing but a little more - that combination of pace and swing hurts the batsman."

It's something many others have told him. During the IPL in South Africa, Kevin Pietersen, Praveen's captain then, urged him to build some muscle and crank up some pace. "Just five to 10 kmph more. No one can touch you." It's an eminently sensible piece of advice, but India has seen one swing bowler in Irfan Pathan falter due to an obsession with pace. Maybe Praveen is wary of going down that route. He just quietly nodded at Pietersen that day, with a smile.

Today, he left the press conference with a smile. What will be a good score for India? "Utna mere ko idea nahi hai. Hoga jitna bi hoga (I have no idea, whatever will happen will happen)." For a man who doesn't smile much on the field, he always brings a smile on your face beyond it.

Sriram Veera is a staff writer at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Karthik_CricketFan on June 24, 2011, 6:57 GMT

    I do not want Sreesanth in the English tour.

  • Finn92 on June 23, 2011, 11:30 GMT

    I think he could be useful in English conditions and could trouble our batsman a bit, but when it's a good day to bat his lack of pace will be his downfall.

  • on June 22, 2011, 19:58 GMT

    @Krishna Darooka: Are you one of those from Windies who's irked to see an Indian bowler swinging the ball very well n taking wickets..!

    Haha, seriously dude, wat'r u sayin..! This guy has played his first innings and he must've been thrilled with having got wickets... And after tat he must've felt damn bad as he was not allowed to bowl again in the inns, so no five for on debut...

    And u'r saying, drop him, send him back, bring in an enquiry bla bla bla.... Huh, Come on, Shut this dude...@Krishna Darooka: Are you one of those from Windies who's irked to see an Indian bowler swinging the ball very well n taking wickets..!

    Haha, seriously dude, wat'r u sayin..! This guy has played his first innings and he must've been thrilled with having got wickets... And after tat he must've felt damn bad as he was not allowed to bowl again in the inns, so no five for on debut...

    And u'r saying, drop him, send him back, bring in an enquiry bla bla bla.... Huh, Come on, Shut this dude

  • on June 22, 2011, 19:16 GMT

    However the fact that he was suspended shows he is not prepared for the test

    How can he commit the same mistake three times ,as a punishment he should be dropped in the next test and enquiry be made how did he commit the mistake three times ,was he stubborn not to listen to the umpire and in that case he should be sent back and replacement may be asked for. However don't get Zahir as a replacement since he opted out from the tour

  • priyankpradeep on June 22, 2011, 17:25 GMT

    About a few days back in a comment to an article on this site i had said that for his ability to move the ball both ways PK should be considered for tests. Good to see him getting a chance and even more delighted to see him grabbing it the way many of his fans would have wanted him to. And i think knowing the fact that ball will swivel in England, it would only be wise to retain him in team even if Sree and Zak and others are back. i think the length he balls, Slightly Full Good Length, makes it difficult for the batsmen to make adjustments on movements. i find PK as a cunning and smart cricketer, grumpy but effective.

  • sarga2006 on June 22, 2011, 15:36 GMT

    i am 100% sure tat england will fail in ta seres with india. PK wont be effective with a good team and dont praise Bhajji for his bating efforts. He can do that only agnst weak teams like Windies or NewZea.For england Andrson,Broad and Swann will bleed a lot of runs.Only Tremlett can bowl properly for them. In tha bating department Strauss is tottaly out of form and i am surer they will fail as a team altogether.

  • Cricket_is_soul on June 22, 2011, 14:31 GMT

    Hi Cricker lovers, It's great that india is performing well at this moment. For english tour Praveen, ishant, Munaf and sSeeshanth should find a rotational selction in the 4test series spearheaded by Zaheer. I think this makes a world class attack to dismantle the english. Also we have a controlled bunch of fast medium bowlers. Surely they can be handy in the english Summer.

  • abhijithbhandari on June 22, 2011, 14:11 GMT

    World cup missed due to injury, Test cap worn due to sreeshant injured.Migt be a co incident,but he has proved that he got lot talents.His excellent bowling spell gave India an edge in this match. Certainly India will win this match, Around 280 plus target is not bad but 3rd day;s first session is all important.Rahul and kohli must stand at least till the lunch,so the rest will be easy for India.Dhoni has to show courage to declare inning by the drinks and pick up at least one or 2 wickets in early overs. Let us see what happens.

  • inswing on June 22, 2011, 13:43 GMT

    PK seems like a very effective bowler and should be given more chances. If attempts of increase pace result in loss of line, length and rhythm, and cause injuries, that would be disastrous. Let him be his own style of bowler rather than trying to make him fit in a standard. You don't ask Malinga to bowl with upright arm, you don't ask Kumble to work on spinning the ball more. PK might well be effective as he is.

  • on June 22, 2011, 13:27 GMT

    w think praveen has swing no speed thats fine even zak has cut down pace to swing and reverse swing he is good bowler he was no 2 odi bowler before wc unfournetly he missed due to injury and undeservingly sreeshant got chance and medal and he can be a good test bowler and also in odi he should be finished by over 40 by dhoni aas he is more useful there my team for eng test - v sehwag , g gambhir ,r dravid ,s tendulkar ,vvs ,yuvi ,ms ,bhajji ,zak,i sharma and sreeshant/praveen kumar whoever ms is more comfortable as a indivual subs pujara,kholi,raina (to give exposure 3 to test match cricket with red ball in eng conditons sreeshant/praveen kumar (whoever doesnt play) m patel p patel(rwc) a mishra and p ojha

  • Karthik_CricketFan on June 24, 2011, 6:57 GMT

    I do not want Sreesanth in the English tour.

  • Finn92 on June 23, 2011, 11:30 GMT

    I think he could be useful in English conditions and could trouble our batsman a bit, but when it's a good day to bat his lack of pace will be his downfall.

  • on June 22, 2011, 19:58 GMT

    @Krishna Darooka: Are you one of those from Windies who's irked to see an Indian bowler swinging the ball very well n taking wickets..!

    Haha, seriously dude, wat'r u sayin..! This guy has played his first innings and he must've been thrilled with having got wickets... And after tat he must've felt damn bad as he was not allowed to bowl again in the inns, so no five for on debut...

    And u'r saying, drop him, send him back, bring in an enquiry bla bla bla.... Huh, Come on, Shut this dude...@Krishna Darooka: Are you one of those from Windies who's irked to see an Indian bowler swinging the ball very well n taking wickets..!

    Haha, seriously dude, wat'r u sayin..! This guy has played his first innings and he must've been thrilled with having got wickets... And after tat he must've felt damn bad as he was not allowed to bowl again in the inns, so no five for on debut...

    And u'r saying, drop him, send him back, bring in an enquiry bla bla bla.... Huh, Come on, Shut this dude

  • on June 22, 2011, 19:16 GMT

    However the fact that he was suspended shows he is not prepared for the test

    How can he commit the same mistake three times ,as a punishment he should be dropped in the next test and enquiry be made how did he commit the mistake three times ,was he stubborn not to listen to the umpire and in that case he should be sent back and replacement may be asked for. However don't get Zahir as a replacement since he opted out from the tour

  • priyankpradeep on June 22, 2011, 17:25 GMT

    About a few days back in a comment to an article on this site i had said that for his ability to move the ball both ways PK should be considered for tests. Good to see him getting a chance and even more delighted to see him grabbing it the way many of his fans would have wanted him to. And i think knowing the fact that ball will swivel in England, it would only be wise to retain him in team even if Sree and Zak and others are back. i think the length he balls, Slightly Full Good Length, makes it difficult for the batsmen to make adjustments on movements. i find PK as a cunning and smart cricketer, grumpy but effective.

  • sarga2006 on June 22, 2011, 15:36 GMT

    i am 100% sure tat england will fail in ta seres with india. PK wont be effective with a good team and dont praise Bhajji for his bating efforts. He can do that only agnst weak teams like Windies or NewZea.For england Andrson,Broad and Swann will bleed a lot of runs.Only Tremlett can bowl properly for them. In tha bating department Strauss is tottaly out of form and i am surer they will fail as a team altogether.

  • Cricket_is_soul on June 22, 2011, 14:31 GMT

    Hi Cricker lovers, It's great that india is performing well at this moment. For english tour Praveen, ishant, Munaf and sSeeshanth should find a rotational selction in the 4test series spearheaded by Zaheer. I think this makes a world class attack to dismantle the english. Also we have a controlled bunch of fast medium bowlers. Surely they can be handy in the english Summer.

  • abhijithbhandari on June 22, 2011, 14:11 GMT

    World cup missed due to injury, Test cap worn due to sreeshant injured.Migt be a co incident,but he has proved that he got lot talents.His excellent bowling spell gave India an edge in this match. Certainly India will win this match, Around 280 plus target is not bad but 3rd day;s first session is all important.Rahul and kohli must stand at least till the lunch,so the rest will be easy for India.Dhoni has to show courage to declare inning by the drinks and pick up at least one or 2 wickets in early overs. Let us see what happens.

  • inswing on June 22, 2011, 13:43 GMT

    PK seems like a very effective bowler and should be given more chances. If attempts of increase pace result in loss of line, length and rhythm, and cause injuries, that would be disastrous. Let him be his own style of bowler rather than trying to make him fit in a standard. You don't ask Malinga to bowl with upright arm, you don't ask Kumble to work on spinning the ball more. PK might well be effective as he is.

  • on June 22, 2011, 13:27 GMT

    w think praveen has swing no speed thats fine even zak has cut down pace to swing and reverse swing he is good bowler he was no 2 odi bowler before wc unfournetly he missed due to injury and undeservingly sreeshant got chance and medal and he can be a good test bowler and also in odi he should be finished by over 40 by dhoni aas he is more useful there my team for eng test - v sehwag , g gambhir ,r dravid ,s tendulkar ,vvs ,yuvi ,ms ,bhajji ,zak,i sharma and sreeshant/praveen kumar whoever ms is more comfortable as a indivual subs pujara,kholi,raina (to give exposure 3 to test match cricket with red ball in eng conditons sreeshant/praveen kumar (whoever doesnt play) m patel p patel(rwc) a mishra and p ojha

  • Angad11 on June 22, 2011, 13:26 GMT

    I saw an interview of Praveen called like Baat and Bowl on TV sometime back and was so impressed by him. So very simple and very down to earth. Good Luck wrestler.

  • viaESPN on June 22, 2011, 13:15 GMT

    praveen is really indeed a great bowler.but by seeing his batting he has 2 mature. if he concentrate in his battin for while, definitely he has chance 2 becom a fertile all rounder in tis field. anyway all the best to him for his works.

  • Jose on June 22, 2011, 13:11 GMT

    Good stuff from Praveen and he has already proved in shorter format of the game that he can swing either ways and take wickets. He can be very dangerous in English conditions and its not easy ride for England against Indian bowlers as they are contemplating that Indian bowling is weak. For England, India should pick Zaheer Khan, Praveen Kumar, Ishant Sharma and Munaf Patel. Irfan Pathan should be given a last chance as a backup player to prove his worth. If he is back to form, he can damage the opposition more than anybody.

  • dsig3 on June 22, 2011, 12:48 GMT

    I see.........the next Mathew Hoggard. Good bowler but teams will learn to last him out initially and then he wont be very effective.

  • harshalb on June 22, 2011, 12:38 GMT

    PK is Umar Gul or what? sounds like

  • couchpundit on June 22, 2011, 12:22 GMT

    PK should learn not to lioe about injuries and be honest with him for the sake of country...we have seen him in hte past breaking down because of un informed injuries....If that part of his character is taken care of... then he has a good chance to shine.

  • shravkumar on June 22, 2011, 12:18 GMT

    Take him on that trip to England. This lad might just win us the test series there.

  • puneet_usa on June 22, 2011, 12:01 GMT

    I would personally like to contact the genleman in west indies team who went in media and said that he is eyeing a score of 400 in first inning for West Indies- Anyhow I think We won't see him commenting on anything in the media anytime soon- People-- Stop pointing fingers at each other- Team India is on a high at the moment- we are The World Champions- We are the No.1 ranked test team- Youngsters are there to prove a point that they can deliver on big stage- Lets back up our team guys- There was a time when a full strength indian team didn't even looked like coming back home capturing anything even when they toured a weak cricket nation like Zimbabwe- Just enjoy the nice patch Indian Cricket is going through and Cherish the spirit of the game- I feel this tour has been great as far as experimentation goes before the the England Tour- I can just imagine the English getting smashed all around by "Men In Blue",We are yet to hit out peak form yet- BEWARE ENGLAND-WILL B BLEEDING BLUE-

  • muski on June 22, 2011, 11:49 GMT

    I said this earlier that PK should be on the plane to England along with Irfan( especially after his showing in IPL) and Sreesanth. We should play 4 seamers and Bhajji in all our England tests. Srikanth and Co should think out of the box and have horses for courses Only problem with this is that the Test Team will have a rather long tail though in the last 2 years the tail has wagged exceedingly well. As Chappell said of somebody, Vijay is past his expiry date and Mukund has shown signs of his great promise. The only problem he has is that he has to wait a bit longer as there is no slot for him when the Badshah's come back.

  • KAIRAVA on June 22, 2011, 11:45 GMT

    Praveen Kumar is the next Zaheer Khan. Like Zaheer Khan, he lacks pace, swings the ball & is mentally & physically strong. And above all he is still young at 24 while Zaheer is 32+. I think he has one of the best bowling averages for a domestic first class bowler in India at 23 runs per wicket. Mind you, he has picked up 172 wickets in 38 first class matches on dry & spin friendly Indian tracks at a good economy rate of 2.79 and a pretty decent strike rate of 49.0. This is even better than Zaheer Khan's first class bowling average in India of 25.86. I personally think that Praveen is going to rock in England where conditions favour his swing bowling even more than India or West Indies.

  • on June 22, 2011, 11:18 GMT

    Javagal Srinath played more than 100 one day internationals before playing his first home test...

    Robin Singh played 60 one day internationals before playing his only test

    Here comes PK, who plays his first test after 52 one day internationals. A shining ball will just listen to him as he says... PK will be called the best test bowler soon

  • govisri on June 22, 2011, 10:39 GMT

    PK is more of a swing bowler - in the same mould as Ian Botham and Lance Cairns. He is an intelligent thinking bowler and would be an asset in all three formats. He is not express - but so what ? For someone who had bowled long spells in domestic cricket in India and successfully at that, he would be quite a handful in England. Cmon guys,give PK a break - he is in the team because of his ability to take wickets and consistently at that and he has proven this. Well done PK. I feel sorry for him that he missed out on the world cup:(

  • on June 22, 2011, 10:21 GMT

    It was the treffic spells of bowling from Praveen and it didn't see like he was playing his first test match but he need to get ride of the problem of landing his foot not on the danger zone.

  • reghuh on June 22, 2011, 10:03 GMT

    India on top again........i thought wi should have been bundled out before 100 runs...but for chanderpaul and bharath.... If indian batting comes good, 400+ runs to chase, wi will fold for around 150 runs in the second innings........

  • Notredam on June 22, 2011, 9:44 GMT

    Come on RP singh and ravindra jadeja..they deserve..place in Tst and ODiI respectively..

  • on June 22, 2011, 9:39 GMT

    Credit to his focus, despite having too many pundits talk about greater pace Praveen has retained the belief that his swing is his premium calling card and hasn't (yet) sacrificed that in the quest for pace. Agreed, there'd be days when the ball would refuse to budge off the line and especially on tracks like Antigua, Rajkot or Adelaide he might be taken to the cleaners. But he has done the hard yards on the dead tracks backs home .. and its better to have someone who can swing it at 75-80 mph than trying for 85 mph and losing his wrist position. Pathan's loss still rankles ...

  • patanjali on June 22, 2011, 9:01 GMT

    Hmm he is a great bowler but i dont think i can be sucesful at test level.He should some what increase his pace.Coming to test squad for England here are my 11.Shewag,gambir,dravid,sachin,vvs laxman,pujara,dhoni,bajji,Praveen kumar/mishra,ZAK,Ishanth sharma

  • Jim1207 on June 22, 2011, 8:39 GMT

    Just leave a person to his own strength and let him prove his talent. Do not spoil him by forcing him to increase pace. One person would say to him to increase pace by 10 kmph and no one could touch him. Then, another person would advise him to increase pace by another 10 kmph so that he could bowl like Akhtar or Lee. We have to understand that one player has come to international level because of his talent, in Praveen's case swing without much pace. He could do that consistently in international cricket too and if possible, he could later add pace a little if he feels that would not affect his swing. Not everybody could be express in pace and swing like Steyn. Let a person be himself and do his magic. Yes, Praveen must be playing as second pace bowler to Zaheer Khan, if needed India can field 3 pace bowlers with Ishant too against England.

  • Jim1207 on June 22, 2011, 8:28 GMT

    Those who want pace, pace and pace all the time in test cricket will not even understand what Praveen says and what swing bowling is all about.

  • indianzen on June 22, 2011, 8:16 GMT

    Its very tough to see Mukund and Vijay who did so well in domestic struggling... may be they can put dravid to open the innings with Parthiv patel and replace Mukund with Badrinath, to get the strongest middle order combination.

  • indianzen on June 22, 2011, 8:14 GMT

    I second Kevin Peterson, just another 10 kmph more, Praveen will be the best bowler in the world.. he was so deadly with the ones that are shaping into the batsmen...

  • skumarpp on June 22, 2011, 8:09 GMT

    Just wait a bit more! You cant get into a verdict on the basis of this one match! Saurav Ganguly would have taken 5 or more wickets on this pitch.But Praveen is far better than Munaf for sure.

  • anver777 on June 22, 2011, 8:02 GMT

    Praveen Kumar is a wicket taking bowler from his early days & consistent performer for IND in overs format. I think IND selectors should have tried him for tests a couple of years back....... anyway excellent debut !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • sachink.khanna on June 22, 2011, 7:56 GMT

    This bloke is a magician of swing, he can swing both ways - his in-swingers are as lethal as his normal out-swingers. He deserved a test debut and now that he has got it, he should play a significant hand in India's victory in the series.

  • DanieTJohn on June 22, 2011, 7:29 GMT

    Praveen has really matured enough and is one of India's few fast baller's who can create problems for batsmen. Zak and Praveen would be a great combination as opening bowlers against England.

  • on June 22, 2011, 7:17 GMT

    I would love to see him bowling rippers at an increased pace in English conditions. He is a genuine cherry swinger like Manoj Prabhakar & Chaminda Vaas. Ideally he uses his wrist for swinging the ball!! If he adds reverse to his armory, he can be a captain's favourite with the old ball as well.. And his batting, if properly conduited, can be of critical importance.. Maybe he should take some tips from Bhajji..;)

  • on June 22, 2011, 7:03 GMT

    He'll be a good bowler if he gets opportunites

  • on June 22, 2011, 6:57 GMT

    praveen is a good line and length swing bowler. if he is goin to be consistent enough in this series then he should be given an opportunity in the england tour as the overcast conditions will surely help him....

  • v_singh on June 22, 2011, 6:35 GMT

    Praveen bowled well in the first innings and should succeed in English conditions too.. Hope he does well in remaining WI test matches too. Ideal team India for England would be : Sehwag, Gambhir, Dravid, Sachin, VVS / Virat / Pujara, Raina (can't play short ball, but can bowl a bit - 5th & part time bowler), Dhoni, Bhajji, Zaheer, Ishant & Praveen. [For English players, part time spinners like Raina would also be handy :)]

  • on June 22, 2011, 6:22 GMT

    Indeed a fantastic performance by PK. Don't want to dwell much in what his future would be. The point is he bowled brilliantly today and always looked like taking wickets. It was fortunate that he was stopped from bowling for treading the pitch thrice but that can happen with any bowler. As far as squad for England is concerned Viru, Gauti, Dravid, Sachin, Laxman, Dhoni, Bhajji, Zak, Ishant are obvious choices. For remaining spots, Yuvraj, Raina, Parthiv, Sreesanth, PK, Mishra and an additional seamer in Mithun. PP as a reserve keeper n opener.

  • pvwadekar on June 22, 2011, 6:10 GMT

    The squad for England Gambhir, Shewag, Dravid, Tendulkar Laxman,Kohli, Raina, Rohit, Dhoni, Harbhajan, Zaheer, Sreeshant, Munaf, Ishant, Praveen, Mishra

  • indiaworldchamps2011 on June 22, 2011, 6:05 GMT

    i agree with NRI that shud be on the plane to england... he swings the ball in indian conditions imagine what can he do in england!!! @srinivas narayan.. mate this has happened to him for the first time... he has played so many ODIs and it has never happened before.. so chill out i am sure this is jus one off..

  • AbAdvani on June 22, 2011, 5:58 GMT

    Irfan and Pravin need to be in the "swing" of things in England -Irfan showed he can stil get the ball to swing in IPL and would be a handy low order bat since I don't expect the teams to have a run fest in England if the ball is seaming and swinging. M.Vijay and Abhinav Mukund need to be replaced for the current WI series -Get Parthiv and Jaffer instead (and Rahane as a backup)

  • Notredam on June 22, 2011, 5:57 GMT

    For england tour.. I will have 2 spinners..Bhaji,,mishra,,for pacers,,Zak,Ishant,Praveen,Munaf & Rpsingh,,,Rp wud relish those conditions...and he needs comeback..also in international cricket,,,

  • BULTY on June 22, 2011, 5:13 GMT

    Praveen did bring in all his ODI experience into display in this his first Test innings as a bowler. Talking about real fast bowlers. Yes a tearing away fast bowler can be a real asset to any team. But with the ODI & T20s being played in increasing numbers, the batsmen all over the world have invented newer methods of dispatching the ball over the boundary,like the "upper cut" "helicopter shot" "swatch hit" and even the conventional reverse sweep is being increasingly used now-a-days. The tear away bowler can get out of rhythm if the batsmen employ these shots and get him away for 4s & 6s. Praveen has the right speed and the swing to trouble batsmen in foreign soil. In my opinion, he need not strain trying to increase his speed and can very well stick to his present style; remember the freak bowler Chandrasekhar, who was neither a fast bowler nor speester. Praveen is in that mould though not a freak bowler and can be very effective in Test matches.

  • Percy_Fender on June 22, 2011, 4:46 GMT

    Manoj Prabhakar was branded a ODI specialist in his playing days and was kept away from the Test side for a long time. When he was selected to play Tests, he was a revelation because he was a good and gutsy opener as well. I remember how he and Sachin managed to save the Old Trafford Test against England in 1990. The match in which Sachin got his first hundred. I also remember Prabhakar partnering Azharuddin in the Adelaide Test in 1992. Here was a wonderful all rounder who could be depended upon I felt. Praveen too is similar. He has been very successful opening for UP both batting and bowling and always looked good enough.I think he should be used in the allrounder's role.Particularly in England.A bowler of his type could be a match winner in England.I feel he could be the big surprise there. His control is phenomenal for which reason, if he adds a bit to his pace, he could be like Mohd Asif was in England last year.England may not have it all that easy come July.

  • maddy20 on June 22, 2011, 4:45 GMT

    Some people don't need pace to pick wickets. Zaheer , Praveen, Munaf are prime examples. They bank on strong seem movement than pace to leave the batsmen bamboozled. Glad that Praveen finally got his chance. Here's hopng he remains fit for the england tour

  • D.Sharma on June 22, 2011, 4:37 GMT

    PK is going to be big. There, I said it.

  • on June 22, 2011, 4:24 GMT

    an amazing swing bowler , for now he's bowling at 120kmph , if he works hard and improves his pace to 130 and keep the swing intact he could be deadly indeed, anyways all in all yesterday was amazing for him, 3 gud wickets at a gud time too, hoping he'd learn from the suspension to not tread on the danger area again :)

  • on June 22, 2011, 4:20 GMT

    Treading on the pitch is not criminal... !! such issues are unnecessary, especially where there is a bright performance to think about... !! I personally believe his true test will come in England, where the conditions especially at the Lords, Nottingham and Edgbaston, will suit his style of bowling... ! If he can press his case there then I believe he can be in the Indian test XV for a very long time... ! I do not trust in pace as such... its a double edged sword... on a fine day it can win u matches but on other days it can be your nemesis... !! the Indian pace bowlers practice control and for them pace is not an essential commodity... !! I think Praveen has the right credentials to be a superb stock bowler for India in the coming years... !! Lets hope he doesn't become an Irfan in the coming years... !!

  • NRI- on June 22, 2011, 3:55 GMT

    Well done, Praveen. He is the sort of bowler who could do well in England. The bowling attacj should be 5 pacemen- Zaheer, Praveen, Ishant, Varun Aaron & RP Singh (back up left arm seamer to ZK is needed because so many batsman have problems against left arm seamers) + 2 spinners - Mishra & Bhajji. Mishra could cause problems for English batsmen. The top 5 batsmen select themselves and then we need to have Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane - both of whom have scored centures against Australia and can handle the short ball and average 61 and 68 in first class cricket - WAY above Murali Vijay, Raina & Yuvraj, all of whom who have had many test match opportunities but not these two. Karthik would be 2nd wk and back up opener (Rahane can also open).

  • on June 22, 2011, 3:48 GMT

    Pravin took wickets alright but wbat abt treading the danger area? Pathetic. This is not even street cricket discipline! He has miissed a chance to get five or six wickets and run thru the innings. Now it will stay in his mind and also umpires and the team for the next complete innings at least. Have the ball boys forgotten even such basics as how not to tread on the danger area? and what have all the coaches been doing all these years?

    And will someone explain to me how after a third strike one more ball can be bowled but not any more overs in the innings?

  • World-Champs-TEAM-INDIA on June 22, 2011, 3:32 GMT

    No , matter how he bowls in the remaining 5 innings of WI Series. He should be in the side for england opening with zak. Ishant as 3rd pacer and bhajji as one spinner and Yuvi's left arm spin to fill some over (and to take the wkt. Of kp). I would Pick yuvraj ahead of anyone , keeping in mind that he has experiance of playing in england and provides variety with his left arm spin. My playing XI For England:- 1) Virender Sehwag 2) Gautam Gambhir 3) Rahul Dravid 4) Sachin Tendulkar 5) Vvs Laxman 6) Yuvraj Singh 7) Ms Dhoni 8) Harbhajan Singh 9) Praveen Kumar 10) Zaheer Khan 11) Ishant Sharma

  • santro1112 on June 22, 2011, 3:29 GMT

    I am sure He has plenty of talent and deserves few more opportunities.. Its good that all seniors are either injured or taking rest. All young guns getting lot of experience,

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  • santro1112 on June 22, 2011, 3:29 GMT

    I am sure He has plenty of talent and deserves few more opportunities.. Its good that all seniors are either injured or taking rest. All young guns getting lot of experience,

  • World-Champs-TEAM-INDIA on June 22, 2011, 3:32 GMT

    No , matter how he bowls in the remaining 5 innings of WI Series. He should be in the side for england opening with zak. Ishant as 3rd pacer and bhajji as one spinner and Yuvi's left arm spin to fill some over (and to take the wkt. Of kp). I would Pick yuvraj ahead of anyone , keeping in mind that he has experiance of playing in england and provides variety with his left arm spin. My playing XI For England:- 1) Virender Sehwag 2) Gautam Gambhir 3) Rahul Dravid 4) Sachin Tendulkar 5) Vvs Laxman 6) Yuvraj Singh 7) Ms Dhoni 8) Harbhajan Singh 9) Praveen Kumar 10) Zaheer Khan 11) Ishant Sharma

  • on June 22, 2011, 3:48 GMT

    Pravin took wickets alright but wbat abt treading the danger area? Pathetic. This is not even street cricket discipline! He has miissed a chance to get five or six wickets and run thru the innings. Now it will stay in his mind and also umpires and the team for the next complete innings at least. Have the ball boys forgotten even such basics as how not to tread on the danger area? and what have all the coaches been doing all these years?

    And will someone explain to me how after a third strike one more ball can be bowled but not any more overs in the innings?

  • NRI- on June 22, 2011, 3:55 GMT

    Well done, Praveen. He is the sort of bowler who could do well in England. The bowling attacj should be 5 pacemen- Zaheer, Praveen, Ishant, Varun Aaron & RP Singh (back up left arm seamer to ZK is needed because so many batsman have problems against left arm seamers) + 2 spinners - Mishra & Bhajji. Mishra could cause problems for English batsmen. The top 5 batsmen select themselves and then we need to have Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane - both of whom have scored centures against Australia and can handle the short ball and average 61 and 68 in first class cricket - WAY above Murali Vijay, Raina & Yuvraj, all of whom who have had many test match opportunities but not these two. Karthik would be 2nd wk and back up opener (Rahane can also open).

  • on June 22, 2011, 4:20 GMT

    Treading on the pitch is not criminal... !! such issues are unnecessary, especially where there is a bright performance to think about... !! I personally believe his true test will come in England, where the conditions especially at the Lords, Nottingham and Edgbaston, will suit his style of bowling... ! If he can press his case there then I believe he can be in the Indian test XV for a very long time... ! I do not trust in pace as such... its a double edged sword... on a fine day it can win u matches but on other days it can be your nemesis... !! the Indian pace bowlers practice control and for them pace is not an essential commodity... !! I think Praveen has the right credentials to be a superb stock bowler for India in the coming years... !! Lets hope he doesn't become an Irfan in the coming years... !!

  • on June 22, 2011, 4:24 GMT

    an amazing swing bowler , for now he's bowling at 120kmph , if he works hard and improves his pace to 130 and keep the swing intact he could be deadly indeed, anyways all in all yesterday was amazing for him, 3 gud wickets at a gud time too, hoping he'd learn from the suspension to not tread on the danger area again :)

  • D.Sharma on June 22, 2011, 4:37 GMT

    PK is going to be big. There, I said it.

  • maddy20 on June 22, 2011, 4:45 GMT

    Some people don't need pace to pick wickets. Zaheer , Praveen, Munaf are prime examples. They bank on strong seem movement than pace to leave the batsmen bamboozled. Glad that Praveen finally got his chance. Here's hopng he remains fit for the england tour

  • Percy_Fender on June 22, 2011, 4:46 GMT

    Manoj Prabhakar was branded a ODI specialist in his playing days and was kept away from the Test side for a long time. When he was selected to play Tests, he was a revelation because he was a good and gutsy opener as well. I remember how he and Sachin managed to save the Old Trafford Test against England in 1990. The match in which Sachin got his first hundred. I also remember Prabhakar partnering Azharuddin in the Adelaide Test in 1992. Here was a wonderful all rounder who could be depended upon I felt. Praveen too is similar. He has been very successful opening for UP both batting and bowling and always looked good enough.I think he should be used in the allrounder's role.Particularly in England.A bowler of his type could be a match winner in England.I feel he could be the big surprise there. His control is phenomenal for which reason, if he adds a bit to his pace, he could be like Mohd Asif was in England last year.England may not have it all that easy come July.

  • BULTY on June 22, 2011, 5:13 GMT

    Praveen did bring in all his ODI experience into display in this his first Test innings as a bowler. Talking about real fast bowlers. Yes a tearing away fast bowler can be a real asset to any team. But with the ODI & T20s being played in increasing numbers, the batsmen all over the world have invented newer methods of dispatching the ball over the boundary,like the "upper cut" "helicopter shot" "swatch hit" and even the conventional reverse sweep is being increasingly used now-a-days. The tear away bowler can get out of rhythm if the batsmen employ these shots and get him away for 4s & 6s. Praveen has the right speed and the swing to trouble batsmen in foreign soil. In my opinion, he need not strain trying to increase his speed and can very well stick to his present style; remember the freak bowler Chandrasekhar, who was neither a fast bowler nor speester. Praveen is in that mould though not a freak bowler and can be very effective in Test matches.