Kuldeep Yadav, a left-arm wrist spinner, was left off the starting lineup for India’s 67-run victory over Sri Lanka in the first One-Day International on Tuesday, January 10 at the Barsapara Cricket Stadium in Guwahati. Akash Chopra, a former cricketer for India, thinks Kuldeep’s exclusion from the starting XI is a little dubious.
In the first game of the series, captain Rohit Sharma chose to start Axar Patel and Yuzvendra Chahal as spinners rather than Washington Sundar and Kuldeep, who were both starters in the team’s playing XI in the most recent match against Bangladesh. The two spinners each let up 58 runs while taking just one wicket.
In a video posted to his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra claimed that Kuldeep is nearly as successful in one-day international cricket as Jasprit Bumrah. The former India opener was a little taken aback by the lack of conversation that followed the chinaman spinner’s ouster from the starting XI.
Aakash Chopra said, “There was no place for Kuldeep Yadav. No one is talking about him, everyone is saying that Bumrah is not there. But if you see Bumrah and Kuldeep Yadav’s stats, there was a tweet from Dilip Mohanty, they are almost equal in everything – wickets or Man of the Match performances.” Aakash Chopra said.
He added, “Kuldeep Yadav has been almost at par with Bumrah in everything, almost neck to neck. Then why don’t we talk about him, that you should play Kuldeep Yadav? India didn’t play him, that’s a separate issue.”
The 28-year-old has 119 wickets with an average of 28.29 and an economy rate of 5.20 while playing for India in 73 matches. He only collected 20 wickets in 17 matches over the last three years despite having few opportunities to do so.