3 quality Indian players who made their Test debut alongside Virat Kohli in 2011 but didn't soar in international cricket

Varun Aaron
Varun Aaron

On 20 June, 2011, current Indian cricket team skipper Virat Kohli made his Test debut against the West Indies at Kingston. Batting at No. 5, he could score only 4 and 15 in the two innings as India coasted to a 63-run win.

Arguably the greatest batsman in the world right now and definitely one of the best batsmen we've ever seen grace the sport, Kohli has been at the top of his game for several years. But others who were introduced to Tests in 2011 haven't had anywhere near the same impact in international cricket.

Here are three players who made their Test debut in 2011, like Virat Kohli, but failed to soar for the Indian cricket team.

#3 Praveen Kumar | 6 Tests, 68 ODIs and 10 T20Is for India

Praveen Kumar
Praveen Kumar

A player who made his Test debut in the very same Test as Virat Kohli, Praveen Kumar had already been part of the white-ball setup for almost four years. He played 84 matches for India across formats, but didn't fulfill his potential in an era that demanded improvement from the team's fast bowlers.

Despite the fact that he was able to swing the ball both ways, Kumar's lack of pace and injury worries often proved to be his undoing. The 35-year-old had his moments in an India shirt, such as those during the 2008 CB series, and picked up a total of 112 wickets in international cricket.

Seeing the success of bowlers like Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who've overcome both injury and issues with lack of pace, it's safe to say that Praveen Kumar should've had a far more decorated Indian career. He retired from all forms of cricket in October 2018.

#2 Varun Aaron | 9 Tests and 9 ODIs for India

Varun Aaron
Varun Aaron

Blessed with raw pace and aggression, Varun Aaron was one of the bowlers who spearheaded India's rise as a fearsome fast-bowling unit. Although his accuracy and constant struggles with injury have let him down at times, the Jharkhand-born pacer has played only nine matches each in the Test and ODI formats.

Aaron's numbers don't make for great reading, with bowling averages of 52.61 and 38.09 in the Test and ODI formats respectively. And despite having impact moments for India, like his bouncer to Stuart Broad and his lovely setup of Moeen Ali in 2014, he hasn't been able to feature in a consistent run of games.

Aaron has found IPL game-time tough to come by as well, making it very tough for him to earn an international recall.

#1 Abhinav Mukund | 7 Tests for India

Abhinav Mukund
Abhinav Mukund

The second player on this list to have made his Test debut with Virat Kohli in June 2011, Abhinav Mukund didn't find as much success as the other two on this list despite a decorated domestic career.

Mukund, a stylish left-handed opener who seemed set to form a lethal opening partnership with friend and state teammate Murali Vijay, had scores of 48 and 62 apart from four failures on the West Indies tour. During his next series, which was a trip to England, he scored a fighting 49 in the 1st Test at Lord's before his form fell off.

And although Mukund played two more Tests six years later in 2017 and scored 81 in what seems to have become his final innings, he couldn't nail down a spot in the side. The 31-year-old still has time to make an Indian comeback, but it doesn't seem likely at the moment. The seven Tests he played may turn out to be his only involvement in international cricket.

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Edited by Atharva Papnoi
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