While several showed their surprise over Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s omission, Deep Dasgupta has insisted that the bowler’s omission wasn’t surprising to him, given his injury record. However, ahead of the limited-overs series against Sri Lanka, Dasgupta called the bowler a good captaincy candidate.
Last week, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) named the 20-member squad for India’s tour to England, which had a surprise omission in the form of Bhuvneshwar Kumar. Despite not having played any red-ball cricket for India in the last two years, his return in the Indian jersey speculated that he would get a nod in the Test squad for the England tour, where conditions favour his style.
However, former Indian wicketkeeper Deep Dasgupta found Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s omission not surprising and added that his fitness would have been a telling factor in the decision made by the cricketing board. Dasgupta also hinted that perhaps India wanted an experienced player like the bowler against Sri Lanka.
"I am not surprised. They have already got 6 fast bowlers (for England tour). I understand that those conditions might help Bhuvneshwar but he has not played red-ball cricket for 2 to 2 and half years. And he has struggled with his fitness post 2018," he told Sports Today.
"He hasn't played red-ball cricket in Ranji Trophy as well. Also, I have a feeling that they had an idea that the Sri Lanka series might be there, you have someone like Bhuvneshwar there. You need some senior players," Dasgupta added.
Earlier, BCCI President Sourav Ganguly confirmed that India would be playing three-ODIs and three-T20Is against Sri Lanka in July. The most obvious choice for leading the Indian side would be Shikhar Dhawan, given his experience of leading teams. However, the former Indian wicket-keeper suggested that Bhuvneshwar would be a good candidate for leading the side, especially given that the big names are missing.
"One of the questions was 'who do I see captaining the side?', I mentioned Shikhar, let's not forget, if Bhuvneshwar is fit and ready to play, he is a good captain candidate as well for that series."