Kuldeep Yadav has been in great form in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022.© BCCI/IPL
Kuldeep Yadav is a player reborn. After his travails with Kolkata Knight Riders in the past few seasons of the Indian Premier League, the left-arm spinner is back making life difficult for the batters. Moving to a new team — Delhi Capitals — has done wonders for him and brought him back into India reckoning and while Kuldeep himself has praised DC coach Ricky Ponting and team captain Rishabh Pant for motivating and showing confidence in him. However, Kuldeep Yadav’s childhood coach Kapil Dev Pandey credited current India captain Rohit Sharma for being the name behind his resurgence.
“Whenever captains trusted him, Kuldeep delivered. He has a good record in Tests. He has two hat-tricks in ODIs. He has a good T20I record. But still, he didn’t get enough opportunities. This is really shocking. Kuldeep’s career is protected because of Rohit Sharma. Rohit is the man behind Kuldeep’s resurgence. He is a fantastic captain and he knows how to find talent in a big group of players. Ahead of the IPL, Rohit called Kuldeep and gave him the chance (against the West Indies). Kuldeep delivered too by taking two wickets,” Pandey was quoted as saying by TimesofIndia.com.
“Rohit kept a close eye on Kuldeep, his Yo-Yo Test and rehab reports. Rohit was impressed with Kuldeep’s rehab programme. Rohit should be credited for Kuldeep’s comeback. He wouldn’t have been here today without the support of Rohit, Pant and Ponting.”
Kapil Dev Pandey also spoke of the time when Kuldeep played under Virat Kohli’s captaincy. He said that Kohli “preferred Axar ahead of Kuldeep”.
“Every captain has their own style of captaining and picking players. Kuldeep played a lot of cricket under Virat. Virat wants experience in the side. He went with Ashwin and Jadeja. He preferred Axar ahead of Kuldeep because of Axar’s batting capabilities. A captain has to trust his players,” the Kuldeep’s childhood coach added.
The left-arm spinner had played nine games for KKR in the 2019 season and then he appeared in just five matches in the following season.
In 2021, he missed the tournament due to an injury and was later released by the side ahead of the mega auction.
But at Delhi Capitals, Kuldeep has found his mojo back. In nine games played in IPL 2022, he has taken 17 wickets at an exceptional average of 15.82.
His only behind India teammate and fellow spinner Yuzvendra Chahal (19 wickets) in the race for the Purple Cap.
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