Ahead of the first T20I against England, India skipper Virat Kohli revealed that pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar remains key to their plans for the T20WC which is scheduled to be played in India later this year.
Virat Kohli Praises Bhuvneshwar Kumar
India and England will be locking horns in a five-match T20I series beginning Friday. Pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar is making a comeback into the side after being on the sidelines for more than one year due to injury. The pacer had last played for India back in December 2019 in a T20I against West Indies.
“Bhuvneshwar is shaping up really well. He has come back, he is fit. He has worked really well to get back to full fitness and look he is a smart operator, we have seen that in the past. And he continues to bring that experience onto the field which is going to be vital for us. He has a clear understanding of what he wants to do going forward,” said Kohli while replying to an ANI query during a virtual press conference.
While speaking about India’s preparation for the T20WC Virat Kohli names Bhuvneshwar Kumar as their key player for the upcoming tournament.
“He wants to contribute towards many more Indian wins in the coming months. Obviously in the T20 World Cup, we would need our most experienced bowler and he is right up there with anyone else in the world in the start, in the middle, and in the death as well. He is a guy you can bank on and I am very glad to have him back. Hopefully, he can build strongly from here and be as ready as he is now for the World Cup,” he added.
When asked whether he thinks India would be the favourites for the T20 World Cup later this year, Kohli said: “I actually think England will be the team to beat in the T20 World Cup, they are the number one side in the world and the prime focus would be on them in this year’s World Cup. All the other teams will be wary of the strength they bring on to the park and they would be the favourites and that would not change regardless of how they think.”
Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami have been rested for this series and right now Natarajan‘s participation in the series looks doubtful. The hosts have a problem of plenty to pick and choose from the likes of Deepak Chahar, Shardul Thakur, and the returning Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
Bhuvneshwar who is a yorker specialist at the backend might just get a nod because of his skills which have paid dividends for his IPL franchise SunRisers Hyderabad.