Posted on: November 16, 2019 Posted by: admin Comments: 0

first_imgIt’s the 10th over of the South African innings after being forced to follow on by India in Ranchi. 12 South African wickets have already fallen in the day. No surprises that the visitors are struggling for survival at this moment with the score reading 26/4. Right then, doughty opener Dean Elgar who also happens to be his team’s leading run-scorer in the ongoing series is hit flush on his helmet by a vicious 145kph bouncer from Umesh Yadav. The batsman instantly falls to the ground completely shaken by the blow. The Indian players rush in to check on him; soon the team physio comes running too. Early Tea is taken as Elgar slowly walks back to the pavilion. Later it is confirmed that he has suffered a concussion to his head and won’t be able to bat again. His nemesis Umesh, meanwhile will go on to finish the day with 5 wickets so far in the Test match, effectively all but sealing a historic clean sweep of the visitors. But it wasn’t supposed to go this way, at least not for Umesh.Umesh Yadav wasn’t even part of India’s original squad for the Freedom Trophy. Even after he had returned figures of 6/88 and 4/45 in his last Test match in India. But as luck would have it, Jasprit Bumrah endured a stress fracture to his back and Umesh was called into the side as his replacement at the last minute. Of course, he wasn’t going to play the 1st Test in Visakhapatnam where India were expected to play 6 batsmen with Ishant Sharma and Mohammed Shami already in the ranks. Umesh would have to wait till Pune to show his true prowess and he didn’t disappoint taking 6 wickets as India romped to an innings victory.By the time Ranchi arrived, Umesh was hard to be left out, especially after Ishant just had 2 wickets to show for his efforts in the previous 2 Tests. While South Africa were getting ready for a trial by spin all series, Umesh blew them away with sheer pace and movement off the pitch.At the start of the South African 1st innings late on Day 2 in Ranchi, Umesh got just one over to bowl under fading lights. But that was enough for him to leave an indelible scar on the minds of the opposition batsmen. On a pitch where Kagiso Rabada and Co. had failed to find almost any purchase at all, Umesh hit the deck hard and bounced out Quinton de Kock with just his 6th delivery of the match. A ripping bouncer had de Kock cramped for room as he tried to get away from the delivery at the last moment. But Umesh’s pace ensured it was too late by then as the ball bounced off the opener’s gloves and nestled cozily into Wriddhiman Saha’s. It was not just a thrilling moment for the Indian team, but also for all the country’s cricket fans who have been brought up on recurring displays of Indian fast bowlers being flayed by oppositions series after series. The image of Umesh punching the air in delight as de Kock stood head down at the crease signified the momentous shift that the nation’s pace bowling has gone through under Virat Kohli. Umesh though wasn’t done with de Kock.After India enforced the follow on, de Kock was there facing Umesh for his 1st over of the innings again. And this time, Umesh castled him with his 1st ball itself with a perfectly pitched delivery on length to which the opener only came half-forward as the ball passed him and sent the off-stump cartwheeling. His 1st innings dismissal certainly must have played a hand in de Kock’s half-hearted approach at defending this ball from Umesh. The wicket meant that Umesh had now struck thrice in his very 1st over in 3 of the 4 innings this series. What more can you ask from your new-ball bowler!Even after his rich returns in the series, there is no guarantee how long Umesh will be able to hold on to his spot in the XI. Once the likes of Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar come back from injuries, Umesh might find himself on the sidelines again. But no one understands this scenario better than Umesh himself. After the win in Pune, Umesh had acknowledged the competition among India’s fast bowlers as a ‘part and parcel’ of the game.”This is part and parcel [of the game], it will keep happening as long as I play cricket. These situations will keep coming, and I know I have to be ready when I get my chance. For that, it’s important to stay positive, keep playing the game, and stay focused,” Umesh said after the Pune Test.What more can you ask from your new ball bowler!advertisementadvertisementAlso Read | Ranchi Test: Umesh Yadav emulates Courtney Walsh with 5th successive 3-wicket haulAlso Read | India vs South Africa 3rd Test: India on the cusp of historic whitewash over South Africalast_img

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