Pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar sustained an injury during India’s match against Pakistan in Manchester on Sunday. Owing to his injury, the bowler has been ruled out of India’s next two World Cup games, informed skipper Virat Kohli.
Bhuvneshwar, while bowling his third over in the match, developed a niggle in his left hamstring and left the ground and did not return to the field for the day. Speaking at the post-match presentation ceremony, Kohli said, “Slight niggle for Bhuvi, he slipped on one of the footmarks. He’s out for two, maybe three games, but he should come back for us at some stage during this tournament. He is very important for us.”
Kohli further added that Mohammad Shami will be the replacement. Shami will take the field for the first time in this World Cup against Afghanistan on June 22 and the captain said the Bengal pacer was raring to perform on the biggest stage.
The India captain was effusive in his praise for team’s top-order batsmen, especially Rohit Sharma, who struck his second hundred of the tournament. “Rohit’s knock was outstanding again. KL helped Rohit, who showed why he’s such a good ODI player again today. It was a team effort to get to 336,” said Kohli.
Kohli was also relieved that Kuldeep Yadav was back in form and said, “Kuldeep Yadav was brilliant. Babar and Fakhar were trying to play him out, but I wanted him to have a longer spell. The ball to dismiss Babar was an outstanding delivery. I think today was the best he bowled at this World Cup.”
Asked that India-Pakistan games have not lived up to the hype of late, Kohli said they do not fall to the trap of playing to the hype, “I think they outplayed us in the Champions Trophy final (in 2017) but if you focus on this game as too emotional, things can go wrong. We never approach them from that perspective. We are professional about it and the result is what matters.”
(With PTI inputs)