In the ongoing Test series against England, Kuldeep Yadav, the crafty chinaman bowler, has made significant strides as a lower-order batsman, providing valuable contributions with the bat when the team needed him to stand firm.

Kuldeep Yadav
Kuldeep Yadav (Image source: Twitter)

During the fifth and final Test, Kuldeep frustrated the English bowlers in the first innings, preventing a potential comeback by the visitors after a quick succession of wickets. Scoring 30 off 69 balls with two fours, his time at the crease proved more crucial than the runs, contributing to India’s cause. Partnering with Jasprit Bumrah, Kuldeep built a 49-run stand for the ninth wicket, helping India close their first innings at 477, leading England by 259 runs.

Throughout the series, Kuldeep faced 362 balls in six innings, surpassing the counts of English skipper Ben Stokes (357 balls) and premier batter Johnny Bairstow (290 balls). Accumulating 97 runs at an average of 19.4, Kuldeep’s ability to occupy the crease and provide crucial lower-order runs played a pivotal role in India’s series performance.

Despite not achieving a significant batting milestone in his Test career, Kuldeep’s extended time at the crease showcased his batting potential, a promising sign for India as veteran spin-bowling all-rounders Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja near the end of their careers.

In earlier Tests, Kuldeep’s knock of 27 runs in Rajkot supported Shubman Gill’s innings, setting the stage for India’s dominant performance. In Ranchi, his partnership with Dhruv Jurel and crucial runs helped India overcome a first-innings deficit and eventually win the series.

With a combined contribution of 18 wickets and valuable runs, Kuldeep emerges as a strong contender for the ‘Player of the Series’ award. England, currently struggling at 148/8, requires 111 more runs to avoid batting again.

In the ongoing Test, Kuldeep Yadav (5/72) and Ravichandran Ashwin (4/51) led India’s bowling charts, bundling out England for 218 in the first innings. India’s strong reply, featuring notable performances from Rohit Sharma, Yashaswi Jaiswal, Devdutt Padikkal, and Sarfaraz Khan, established a commanding lead of 259 runs. The partnership between Kuldeep Yadav and Jasprit Bumrah further strengthened India’s position, setting the stage for a potential series victory. James Anderson achieved a historic milestone by becoming the first pacer to reach 700 Test wickets.

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