Kuldeep Yadav reveals what MS Dhoni told him before the hat-trick delivery
What's the story?
After bagging a hat-trick against the World Champions Australia in the second ODI of the five-match series, Kuldeep Yadav has shed light on what MS Dhoni told him before the hat-trick delivery. The 21-year-old removed Matthew Wade and Ashton Agar on consecutive deliveries of the 33rd over before making Pat Cummins his third victim in as many balls.
Talking about his feat post match, Kuldeep said, "Not really (could never dream it). Initially, I was struggling to bowl in a particular area. It's a game of cricket, everything happens. The last match, where I was hit for three sixes in an over, was a learning experience."
Expanding on how the three wickets panned out, the chinaman revealed that Dhoni gave him a free license to bowl whatever he feels could get him the wicket of Cummins.
"Asked Mahi bhai what I should bowl, he said 'tujhe jaisa lagta hai wo daal (bowl what you want)'. This is special for me, changed the game for us. Really proud moment."
In case you didn't know...
Kuldeep was initially struggling to impose himself on the Australian batsmen, however, a late change of fortune saw him become the third Indian bowler, after Chetan Sharma and Kapil Dev, to register a hat-trick in ODIs.
His Uttar Pradesh teammate, Bhuvneshwar Kumar bagged three wickets in the match as well as India won the match and took a 2-0 lead in the series.
The heart of the matter
The left-arm spinner did not have a great start to the match and was yet again singled out by Glenn Maxwell. Wicketless in seven overs, Kuldeep was asked to change ends and that worked in his favour.
While he forced Wade to play himself down, he caught Agar plumb in front of the wickets with a delivery that dipped at the perfect time and then forced Cummins into edging a delivery that turned away from him to Dhoni.
India and Australia will now be flying to Indore to play the third ODI of the series on Sunday. While Kohli and co. would want to kill the series there, the visitors will be hoping for a comeback.
Time and again Dhoni has helped the bowlers with his insights from behind the stumps. And young bowlers like Kuldeep and Chahal will help themselves improve as a bowler if they continue to follow what the 'former' Indian captain asks of them.