New Delhi: Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who came in for Umesh Yadav, produced a scintillating spell of pace bowling as India take a decisive hold in the second Test match against New Zealand at Kolkata.
The 26-year-old exploited the over-cast conditions and the rain stoppage on the second day to record his first five-wicket haul in India. The swing bowler had taken two five-wicket hauls previously, in England and West Indies.
Considering the nature of the pitches in India, it's indeed heartening to witness the young bowler dominating the day, overshadowing the spinners. (ALSO READ: IND vs NZ, 2nd Test, Day 2 — As it happened...)
"In India you rarely get this kind of wicket, so I wanted to make full use of it," Bhuvneshwar Kumar told the broadcasters after the end of day's play at Eden Gardens.
Virat Kohli opted for Kumar instead of Yadav, and it turned out to be the right decision from the skipper as India now have gained a complete control, in only two days' play, and despite a below-par batting display.
— BCCI (@BCCI) October 1, 2016
Kumar bowled ten overs, took five wickets conceding 33 runs. These are the figures any of the legendary pacers would love to have while playing in India.
"It was one of my dreams to take five wickets in India. When I saw that the wicket would help me, I told myself I want to take five wickets. I really wanted to make use of the opportunity and I'm very happy with how I bowled," he added. (WATCH: Viru in an unseen behind-the-commentary box footage)
Once Mohammed Shami removed Tom Latham, in the second over itself, to give India an early strike, Kumar took the lead and bowled his heart out.
He accounted for Martin Guptill, Henry Nicholls – both bowled, Kiwi stand in skipper Ross Taylor caught at slip, Mitchell Santner trapped LBW and Matt Henry bowled.
At the end of second day's play, New Zealand still trail India by 188 runs with 3 wickets remaining in the first innings.
India, thanks to an unbeaten 54 from Wriddhiman Saha, managed 316 in the first innings. And it finally looked like a good first innings total.
Here's what other Indian bowlers who took 5 wickets have to say about this feat:
— Irfan Pathan (@IrfanPathan) October 1, 2016
— Harbhajan Turbanator (@harbhajan_singh) October 1, 2016