Kuldeep Yadav Wickets

Kuldeep Yadav has been in stunning for in 2023 (Instagram)Kuldeep Yadav has been in stunning for in 2023 (Instagram)

As the much-anticipated World Cup 2023 draws near, all eyes are on Indian spinner, Kuldeep Yadav. His recent form in ODIs is nothing short of spectacular.

Garnering 31 wickets in just 15 matches in 2023, Kuldeep's bowling average stands at an impressive 15.48. Couple this with his economy rate of 4.57, and it becomes evident why he is the second-highest wicket-taker this calendar year.

Kuldeep Yadav's Resurgence

However, this phase in Kuldeep's career hasn't been easy to come by. The past few years saw the spinner battling with a plethora of challenges, both on and off the field. His once-devastating deliveries seemed to lack their signature fizz and turn, making it easier for batsmen to negotiate him. 

Experts and critics were quick to comment, some suggesting that he needed to up the pace of his deliveries, while others opined that his turn had become too predictable. This phase of doubt and uncertainty was a stark contrast to the promise and brilliance he had shown earlier in his career.

But champions are not made of victories alone but also by the challenges they overcome. Kuldeep's return to form, especially with the World Cup on the horizon, is proof of his determination, resilience, and passion for the game. His recent performances indicate not just a return to his best but also his incredible spirit

As Teams India gears up for World Cup 2023, here’s a look at Kuldeep Yadav wickets across formats.

Kuldeep Yadav in Test Cricket

Emergence on the Test Scene

Kuldeep made his mark in the Test arena when he was called up to play against the West Indies in October 2014. However, he didn’t get the chance to don the whites for his country during that series. The moment of reckoning for Kuldeep came in February 2017 when he was selected for the one-off Test against Bangladesh. While he didn't get to play in this match either, the selectors' confidence in him was evident.

Debut Against Australia

His patience paid off, and Kuldeep was finally handed his debut Test cap against Australia on 25 March 2017 at the Dharamshala Cricket Stadium. And he didn't disappoint. He snared four crucial wickets in the first innings, displaying guile, spin, and control that left the Australian batsmen bamboozled. 

This performance was not just remarkable for its impact but also for its historical significance: Kuldeep became the first left-arm wrist spin bowler to represent the Indian team in Test matches. His debut figures also placed him among the rare few wrist spinners to bag four wickets in their maiden Test outing.

Evolving in the Test Circuit

Kuldeep's success story in Test cricket didn't stop there. On 6 October 2018, playing against West Indies, he recorded his first five-wicket haul in Tests. Such performances solidified his place as a potent spinner in India's Test squad, especially when playing at home where the pitches tend to assist the slower bowlers.

In a landmark match on 6 January 2019, during the fourth Test against Australia at the SCG, Yadav showed his class once again. In what was his inaugural Test match on Australian soil, Kuldeep picked up his second five-wicket haul, restricting the Australian side with figures of 5/99 in their first innings.

In his brief Test career of eight matches, Kuldeep has 34 wickets to his name at an average of 21.55 and an economy rate of 3.43 to go with three five wicket-hauls.

Kuldeep Yadav Wickets: Tests

Economy Rate
Best Figures

Kuldeep Yadav in ODI Cricket

Early Days in ODI Cricket

Kuldeep's foray into One Day Internationals (ODIs) began in June 2017 when he was named in India's squad for the limited-overs tour to the West Indies. His debut came on 23 June 2017 against the same team. While the match didn't provide him an opportunity to bowl due to a rain interruption, his introduction to the international limited-overs scene had been officially made.

Rising Through the Ranks

The subsequent match of the series gave Kuldeep the platform to display his skills, and he bagged three wickets. This performance was an early indicator of the impact he could have in ODIs.

In September of the same year, Kuldeep achieved a milestone many bowlers can only dream of. Playing at Eden Gardens in Kolkata against Australia, he picked up a hat-trick, becoming only the third Indian to do so in ODIs after legends Chetan Sharma and Kapil Dev.

Record-Breaking Spells and Accolades

2018 was another significant year for Kuldeep in the 50-over format. On 12 July, during the first ODI against England, he recorded figures of 6/25. This spell was significant for several reasons. 

Not only was it his maiden five-wicket haul in ODIs, but he also set a new record for the best bowling figures by a left-arm spinner in the format. 

Kuldeep went on to break Pakistani all-rounder Shahid Afridi's record for the best figures by a spinner against England and in England, highlighting his adaptability to foreign conditions.

His talent and unique skill set made him an automatic choice for India's 2019 Cricket World Cup squad. On 30 June 2019, in a match against England, he celebrated his 50th ODI appearance. 

Later in the year, he added another feather to his cap by becoming the first Indian bowler to secure two ODI hat-tricks, this time against the West Indies.

Challenges, Transformation, and Resurgence

While Kuldeep's early ODI career was studded with records and accolades, like all athletes, he faced periods of struggle. The dip in form and rising competition led to spells outside the playing eleven.

However, adversity often breeds innovation. For Kuldeep, this period of introspection was crucial. He went back to the drawing board, working on his bowling speed, variations, and mental approach to the game. This holistic approach, both technical and psychological, played a vital role in his resurgence.

As 2023 approached, the fruits of his labour began to show. With the ODI World Cup on the horizon, Kuldeep's form saw a massive upturn. With his brilliant performances this year, he has once again proven why he is considered one of the best spinners in the white-ball format.

As far as Kuldeep’s wickets in ODIs are concerned, he has 150 scalps to his name in 88 games at an average of 25.64 and an economy rate of 5.11 with two fifers.

Kuldeep Yadav Wickets: ODIs

Economy Rate
Best Figures