Former Indian wicket-keeper batsman Dinesh Karthik who is on duty as one of the commentators in the ongoing 5-match Test series between India and England, launched praise on the hosts’ only wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav not for his bowling but because of his resolute batting in the 3rd and 4th Test match in Rajkot and Ranchi.

Dinesh Karthik made these comments in light of Kuldeep Yadav’s commendable partnership with wicket-keeper Dhruv Jurel in the 2nd innings of the 4th Test. The Chinaman having walked in at number 9 after the dismissal of Ravichandran Ashwin, stood for an outstanding and match-changing 76-run partnership with Jurel.

The 29-year-old showed brilliant prowess with his defensive skill set, negotiated well against spinners, and also batted solidly against England pacers – Ollie Robinson and James Anderson. Kuldeep’s partnership with Jurel was key for the Indians to put up a strong reply to England’s 1st innings total of 353.

Kuldeep Yadav and Dhruv Jurel took India’s total from 177 to 253 before the latter stood for another important partnership of 40 runs with debutant Akash Deep and after Akash’s dismissal, came in Mohammed Siraj who watched Jurel miss out on his maiden Test century by just 10 runs.

“Always been someone who can defend the ball”, Dinesh Karthik highlights Kuldeep’s technique

There have been only a handful of tailenders who have had a decent defensive technique to spend some considerable time on the pitch and Kuldeep Yadav is one of them. In the 2nd innings, Kuldeep might have scored only 28 runs but he played more than 20 overs in a cracked-up pitch in Ranchi before getting his stumps cleaned up by veteran Jimmy Anderson who registered his 698th wicket with that one.

While speaking to Cricbuzz, Dinesh Karthik highlighted Kuldeep’s defensive technique, claiming the latter has always been someone who can push the ball down with a straight bat and that six-hitting is not his forte.

“I am not surprised at all. I say that only because he has always been someone who can defend the ball. Six-hitting is not his strength. He is someone who can defend well. You can see, he took 131 balls to make 28.” – Dinesh Karthik said via Cricbuzz. 

Both Karthik and Kuldeep have played together during their time with the Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League, and the current RCB wicket-keeper appreciated the Delhi Capitals spinner for causing frustration within the English players with his defense and the partnership he had with Dhruv Jurel.

“Very different to what Bazball does, but very effective in this partnership. More than the runs, they played timed and frustrated England. England bowlers had to work really hard to get Kuldeep out. It’s great to see.” – Karthik concluded. 

Following an effective batting stint, Kuldeep Yadav pairs with Ravi Ashwin to dismantle England’s batting order

After facing 131 balls in the middle to help India reach a total of 307, Kuldeep Yadav paired with seasoned off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin and dismantled by the English batting order one by one. It was Ashwin who earned the early breakthrough of Ben Duckett before also claiming Ollie Pope and this Test match’s only centurion Joe Root.

Then Kuldeep Yadav joined the party and led to the removals of Zak Crawley for 60, Ben Stokes for 4, Tom Hartley for 7, and Ollie Robinson for a 3-ball duck to finish with figures of 4/22 in 15 overs.

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