Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here

Home > Features > Facts and figures >

India’s fast bowling department: Jaw-dropping stats since the 2011 World Cup narrates a sorry tale

image_20130115084034

Zaheer Khan’s poor form has hurt India the most. In nine ODIs since the World Cup, he has just nine wickets at a staggering average of 47.44 with a best of 2-39 © Getty Images

By Nishad Pai Vaidya

It has been a rocky passage for the Indian ship since the 2011 World Cup. There have been moments when they pulled off jaw-dropping triumphs, but some of the shocking defeats have taken the sheen off those moments and exposed the glaring chinks in the armour. The pace bowling department in particular has been the Achilles heel, with an unsettled make-up to the whole line-up. To make matters worse, Indian spearhead Zaheer Khan’s form also plummeted, leaving the attack without a guiding force.

Since the end of the 2011 World Cup, a number of pacers have featured in ODIs for India and none of them have established themselves in the long run. There has been a lot of chopping and changing.

Here are the records of all the fast-bowlers who have played for India since April 2011:
 

Bowler M Wkts Avg Eco 4 wkts 5 wkts Best
Vinay Kumar 20 26 30.88 5.43 1 0 4/30
Irfan Pathan 13 21 28.38 5.40 1 1 5/61
Praveen Kumar 20 20 43.00 5.27 0 0 3/37
Umesh Yadav 14 17 41.88 6.33 0 0 3/38
Munaf Patel 8 10 32.00 5.64 0 0 3/35
Ashok Dinda 8 9 42.66 6.27 0 0 2/47
Zaheer Khan 9 9 47.44 5.33 0 0 2/39
Ishant Sharma 6 8 38.00 5.15 0 0 3/34
Varun Aaron 4 6 26.00 5.53 0 0 3/24
Bhuvneshwar Kumar 4 5 34.20 4.88 0 0 2/27
RP Singh 3 4 35.50 6.45 0 0 3/59
Abhimanyu Mithun 3 3 38.66 6.44 0 0 2/32
Shami Ahmed 1 1 23.00 2.55 0 0 1/23

 (Note: Part-timers haven’t been included)

Shocking stats

A shocking fact is that Indian fast-bowlers have recorded only two four-wicket hauls and a solitary fifer after the World Cup final. The averages are also on the higher side and that shows that there has been a lot of inconsistency.

India have played 40 ODIs since April 2011 and this table shows that Vinay Kumar and Praveen Kumar are the only ones who have played at least 50 per cent of those matches. A lot of bowlers have come and gone in the said time interval – almost as if a game of musical chairs was in progress. As a result, there has been a lot of disturbance and the team has had to contend with new faces every series.

Consider this example, in Sri Lanka last year, India’s fast-bowling attack was: Zaheer Khan, Umesh Yadav, Irfan Pathan and Ashok Dinda. Out of the quartet, only Dinda made it through to India’s next ODI assignment – which was against Pakistan. Irfan and Yadav got injured, whereas Zaheer was dropped. Ishant Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Shami Ahmed came in to replace the other three.

The most recent example of poor handling has been Shami. He did well on debut against Pakistan at Delhi and yet found himself out of the side for the next ODI. Bhuvneshwar Kumar has also been very impressive and has got a longer run. But, what will happen to all these bowlers once the more established bowlers recover from injuries. Will they make way for Irfan and Vinay?

Praveen is another bowler who has been a victim of poor handling. He had been fairly consistent and was providing the early breakthroughs. During the disastrous tour to England, he did his reputation no harm. However, things changed once India went to Australia – where he didn’t have a very good run. A below par performance in the Asia Cup was enough for the selectors to axe him.

Rudra Pratap Singh was a surprise inclusion for the England tour as the team struggled with injuries. Initially he looked out of place, but when it looked like he was getting into his rhythm – he was dropped. Nurturing him then would have made more sense as he was settling into his role.

In the two years leading up to the 2011 World Cup, India more or less had a settled pace unit. Ashish Nehra played majority of the games and led the attack. Praveen too was a regular feature and although India tried out a few options, the core of the fast-bowling department didn’t change. Zaheer was wrapped in cotton wool and taken care of with an eye on the Cup.

With two years to go for the next World Cup in Australia, India have to ensure they have at least two bowlers who would be settled in the line-up. They certainly wouldn’t want to go into that tournament with an uncertain attack and have to adopt a strategy similar to the one they employed before the previous event.

Injuries and poor form are inevitable. However, it is in the team management’s control to handle the players better and get the most out of them. Indian cricket needs a revival and all the departments have to take charge.

(Nishad Pai Vaidya is a Correspondent with CricketCountry and an analyst, anchor and voice-over artist for the site’s YouTube Channel. He shot to fame by spotting a wrong replay during IPL4 which resulted in Sachin Tendulkar’s dismissal. His insights on the game have come in for high praise from cerebral former cricketers. He has also participated on live TV talk-shows on cricket. Nishad can be followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/nishad_44)

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 23, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Dubai

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 24, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Sharjah

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 25, 2014 (16:00 IST)   at Dubai

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 25, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Dubai

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 26, 2014 (16:00 IST)   at Abu Dhabi

More

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 22, 2014  at Sharjah

Kings XI Punjab won by 72 runs

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 21, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

Chennai Super Kings won by 93 runs

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 20, 2014  at Sharjah

Kings XI Punjab won by 7 wkts

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 19, 2014  at Dubai

Delhi Daredevils won by 4 wkts

Indian T20 League 2014

Apr 19, 2014  at Dubai

Royal Challengers Bangalore won by 7 wkts

Photos

CSK vs DD, IPL 2014 Match 8 at Abu Dhabi

Videos

IPL: Tanmay Mishra talks shows the contents of his kit

Rajasthan Royals (RR) vs Chennai Super Kings (CSK) Live Cricket Score IPL 2014: Rajasthan win toss, elect to bowl

Who else but Shakespeare on the World Book and Copyright Day?

IPL 2013: Shane Watson’s scintillating century against Chennai Super Kings goes in vain

John Small — The first man to use a straight bat

IPL 2014: Dwayne Bravo’s absence a major blow for Chennai Super Kings

Chennai Super Kings Delhi Daredevils Glenn Maxwell India IPL IPL 7 IPL 2014 Kings XI Punjab KXIP vs SRH KXIP vs SRH 2014 MS Dhoni Mumbai Indians Rajasthan Royals Royal Challengers Bangalore Sunrisers Hyderabad

Rajasthan Royals vs Chennai Super Kings IPL 2014 Match 10: CSK 8/0 after 2 overs

Rajasthan Royals (RR) vs Chennai Super Kings (CSK) Free Live Streaming Online IPL 2014

Live Cricket Score IPL 2014: Rajasthan Royals (RR) vs Chennai Super Kings (CSK) match 10 of IPL 7 at Dubai

Rajasthan Royals (RR) vs Chennai Super Kings (CSK) Live Scorecard IPL 2014: Match 10 of IPL 7 at Dubai

Paul Farbrace can be a good addition to England: Graham Ford

Meg Lanning, Arran Brindle and other women cricketers who have led at a younger age than ther male counterparts

IPL 2013: Chris Gayle’s monumental 175 against Pune Warriors India

Aditya Verma waging war against BCCI for future of Bihar cricket

IPL 2014: Sunrisers Hyderabad need to have a relook at their top-heavy batting line-up

Hasan Raza: The youngest Test debutant

Fan of the Day

Suraj Gowda

Suraj Gowda

622 Posts | 7 Fans

Video Highlights: Virat Kohli's 77 during India vs Sri Lanka ICC World T20 2014 final at Dhaka

Is Aman Varma the next drama queen of telly land?

IPL 2014, RCB vs KKR: bowling heavy KKR to face batting giants RCB

Ranveer Singh: I’m very comfortable speaking about sex!

Arrest warrant issued against BJP leader Giriraj Singh

Also on cricketcountry.com