After India won the thrilling third T20I match against South Africa by 7 runs, winning the series 2-1, Bhuvneshwar Kumar felt that his side was ready to face England and Australia later this year.
Ending the bilateral series on a high, Man of the Series Bhuvneshwar said in a press conference, “We don’t want to be too greedy and we are happy with these two trophies. Hopefully next time we will win all the three trophies. This tour has been brilliant, particularly talking about Test series. Yes we lost two matches, but they were very close. We could have also lost 3-0 or won 2-1 instead. But it gives us confidence in whatever way we have played, and we are ready to go to England and Australia, and do better there.”
Explaining his success in power plays, Bhuvneshwar said, “T20 cricket is all about using variations and timing has to be perfect. Whatever knuckle ball I have bowled, I wanted batsmen to go after that. That way you can get wickets and that’s one of the main reasons why I have been successful in power plays.”
“T20 is such a format that finishes quickly, and you only have four overs. If there are three bad balls in one over you will go for runs and your whole analysis suffers. The team is on back foot because of three balls. So each and every ball becomes very important. It makes the bowler think. Every ball has to be proper and you have to execute the plan properly.”
Comparing the two formats, Bhuvneshwar added, “In Test matches you don’t have to do something different as compared to ODIs or T20 cricket. It’s not much variation but its about line and length. When you come to one-day cricket you look for yorkers and slower ones. It is never easy to switch between formats but it is all about practice and preparation. You need 2-3 overs to adjust when you play but when it comes to T20s, you have to be proactive and you cannot react after what the batsman does.”
“Power plays are very important in both formats, but you cannot win matches based on power plays alone. If any team is down 4-5 wickets in the power plays but you still end up giving too many runs in the end, then you cannot win,” he said. “Power play is an important factor to win matches but you have to contain the runs in middle overs and you have to do brilliantly in the death overs.”
When asked about his ommission from the second Test, Bhuvneshwar said that the match had all the right bowlers needed. “I don’t know about that (not playing in second Test at Centurion). I don’t want to go back to the Tests, or why I didn’t play. It’s all about team effort. If you talk about that match, there were bowlers who could bowl brilliantly in those conditions,” he said.
Speaking on new bowling faces in the South African team, Bhuvneshwar said, “Heinrich Klaasen is an amazing player given the way he batted in the last two matches and in the ODIs also. They are very good players. When you play against new players, you don’t know what their strengths are, especially Christiaan Jonker, we didn’t know what he does. It is never easy to play first match against any player. They are new players but I think we bowled well to get them out.”