Bhuvneshwar Kumar concentrates on technique and variations, not speed

Bhuvneshwar Kumar is utilising the break to work on fitness and sharpen his skills © AFP

New Delhi: Sep 8, 2013

Working hard on his form and fitness to prepare for the hectic international schedule, Indian pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar said he is not worried about losing pace and focussed on improving his line and length.

“When I started playing cricket, I knew that my physique is not at all like a typical fast bowler. My body language is also different and I am not aggressive by nature thus my focus was always on my skills,” Bhuvneshwar told ‘PTI Bhasha’ in an interview.

“I don’t run after speed. Obviously, it will be better to have some more pace but I am very well aware that I can’t bowl with the speed of 150 kmph. I am working hard on my technique and variations,” said the bowler, who is busy with off-season training in Meerut.

He has hogged the limelight with his fine performance in the Champions Trophy claiming six wickets at an economy rate of 3.91 and was included in the ‘Team of the Tournament’.

He had maintained the form in the tri-series in the West Indies where he posted career-best figures of four for eight against Sri Lanka.

He was awarded Man of the Series in this tournament after he finished with most wickets. When asked about his off season training, he said he is working on his fitness and skills.

“Next season is going to be very hectic so I am utilising this break to work on my fitness and sharpen my skills. I am doing a lot of gym and the stint in NCA (National Cricket Academy) has been very beneficial,” he said.

“I am working on my swing and yorkers. It is also necessary to mould according to the format like you have to bowl differently in ODIs (One-Day Internationals) and Test matches,” he added.

There will be pressure on him considering his fine form, but he is not worried about upcoming South Africa tour as of now.

“There is no additional pressure. I will bowl with the same intensity. The South Africa tour is at the end of this year. Before that we have to play a series against Australia and then with West Indies. I am keeping my eyes on those right now,” he said.

Many believe that he can lead the Indian pace attack replacing Zaheer Khan but he said that nobody can replace the veteran.

“Zaheer has vast experience and is a great bowler. Nobody can replace him. As far as I am concerned my priority is to perform well and win matches for India. Our pace department is very well balanced and there is a healthy competition which is good for the team,” he said.

He credited his teammates and the atmosphere of dressing room for his recent success.

“My family and friends were always supportive but my teammates and the dressing room atmosphere played a major role in my good performance recently.”

“Most of the players have played junior cricket together and gel very well. We keep motivating each other that resulted in good performance as a unit,” he said.