If Umesh Yadav does a review of his bowling from the two games he played for India Red in the NKP Salve Challenger Trophy,he will recall straying down the leg side and also gifting away poor deliveries,which gave batsmen the luxury of width.
While he did bowl well in patches,such deliveries were too few and far between to make an impact.
Though the matches he has played in have been high-scoring ones,Yadav,one of the mainstays of Indias Test bowling line-up,will kick himself for not living up to the expectations that come with being a strike bowler.
He took away figures of 1 for 67 in the first game against India Blue and 1 for 85 in Saturdays match,a game Delhi won by 112 runs to set-up a final date with India Blue.
Yadavs return to competitive cricket his last first class game was an ODI against Sri Lanka in Port of Spain during the Tri-Nation series in July was marked by lack of discipline.
Essentially a bowler whose stock delivery is the out-swinger,Yadav wasted the new ball against Delhi and was hit for 25 in his first two overs.
Though he bowled better on Friday against India Blue his first four overs costing only 20 runs Sundays performance was far from satisfactory.
Yadav started with two wides down the leg side before Unmukt Chand hit his first legal delivery for a boundary through the covers. Yadav replied with two successive deliveries that squared up Chand.
But he couldnt keep up the pressure on the batsman.
When Gambhir,largely out of form during his County stint,came on strike Yadav bowled onto his pads. When Yadav bowled a fuller length,Gambhir placed the ball between cover and point for a four.
Yadav continued to drift onto the leg-side and provided width. Yusuf Pathan took him off and introduced Abhimanyu Mithun. When Yadav was brought back into the attack he was bowling to Virat Kohli. The third delivery to Kohli was a half-volley,which the batsman flayed through the covers.
During the batting powerplay,Yadav clearly frustrated at not being able to get a breakthrough resorted to bowling short,hoping that his pace would unsettle Milind Kumar. However,Kumar waited on the backfoot and confidently quelled the threat by hitting a six over third man by using the upper cut.
This was after Kumar found two boundaries through the point and the third man region off Yadav. Lower down the order,Rajat Bhatia and Puneet Bisht,combined to hit 15 in one Yadav over.
The twenty-five-year-old fast bowler wasnt close to his best. His average showing could be put down to a coat of rust owing to the two-month break. Yadav,though, wouldnt want to have too many more such days.