Bhuvneshwar Kumar clarifies 'reports' of his reluctance to play Test cricket
Indian pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar took to social media on Saturday to clarify reports that have suggested his reluctance to play Test cricket.
"There have been articles about me not wanting to play Test cricket. Just to clarify, I have always prepared myself for all three formats irrespective of the team selection and will continue to do the same. Suggestion - please don't write your assumptions based on "sources"!" wrote Bhuvneshwar on his official Twitter account.
Bhuvneshwar, who missed the Australia tour last year after suffering an injury in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020, returned to action during India's recently ended limited-overs series against England at home. He also played for Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in the IPL 2021, which recently was scrapped due to a surge in the COVID-19 crisis in India. Although he had a tough run in the IPL, picking just three wickets in five games. SRH were at the bottom of the IPL 2021 points table when the tournament was suspended earlier this month.
Meanwhile, Bhuvneshwar was not picked in the Indian squad for their upcoming World Test Championship (WTC) final against New Zealand and subsequent five-match Test series against England, both in the UK.
In England, a bowler thrives on swing and seam and Bhuvneshwar could have been an asset for India. Earlier, a report in the Times of India suggested that the fast bowler has changed his work-drills, inclined more towards the white-ball game and is not interested in playing Test cricket anymore.
"Bhuvneshwar just doesn't want to play Test cricket anymore. That drive has gone missing. Those who have seen him from close insist he brought in a huge change in his work-drills a couple of seasons ago, doing away with heavy weight training, falling to the lure of the white-ball comfort and avoiding those hours of long spells that are so integral to red-ball cricket. To be honest, the selectors don't even see Bhuvi hungry for 10 overs, forget Test cricket. It's Team India's loss no doubt because if one bowler should have made it to England, it should have been him," said those tracking Bhuvneshwar's developments, according to the Times of India.
"Ishant has been the backbone of India's attack, and rightly so, but when was the last time he worked his way through an entire series? Injury relapses and niggles have been a constant irritant. That will leave the bulk of the responsibility on two pacers, Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami. Their hard work, recent performances and the ability to deal with the given conditions have been a plus. Umesh is around, but he's been a lottery at most times," a source was quoted by Times of India, as saying in an interview.
Having made his Test debut in 2013, Bhuvneshwar has played 21 Tests for India so far. He has claimed 63 wickets, including four five-wicket hauls and three four-fors so far in the longest format of the game.