Having not played a single game during the recently-concluded India’s tour of Australia, chinaman bowler Kuldeep Yadav was once again left out of India’s playing XI for the first Test against England at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on Friday.
Kuldeep was left out on the bench despite India opting to play three spinners – R Ashwin, Shahbaz Nadeem, and Washington Sundar — in the playing XI. His exclusion raised a few eyebrows on Twitter as fans demanded justice for the Kuldeep, who last played a Test back in 2019.
So far, Kuldeep has played 6 Tests and has 24 wickets to his name, including two five-wicket hauls. Former Indian batsman Mohammed Kaif also echoed the sentiments of the fans on his exclusion.
Kaif pointed out how the left-arm spinner was touted as India’s first-choice spinner in the longest format, two years ago, but now he is finding it hard to get a game even in the home conditions.
“Just two years ago, Kuldeep Yadav was touted as India’s first-choice spinner in Tests. Now, he’s battling to stay afloat. But he needn’t look too far for inspiration. Ashwin & Pant too fought back from periods of self-doubt. Stay strong Kuldeep!” Kaif tweeted.
Here’s how Twitter reacted:
Apart from opting for three spinners, Team India decided to go for just two pacers – Jasprit Bumrah and Ishan Sharma, who returns to the side after an injury setback which kept him out of the Australia tour.
Skipper Virat Kohli also returns to the playing after missing the last three Test in Australia. He had returned home on paternity leave after the first Test in Adelaide.