Bhuvneshwar Kumar is one of those cricketers who lets his deeds do the talking. He would have been perfectly justified in being peeved at being left out of the team for the historic 500th Test in Kanpur. After all just a couple of Tests earlier he had bagged another "Michelle" in the West Indies. The next Test was washed out so he had done nothing wrong to be left out for Kanpur. Be that as it may, the unassuming seam bowler showed exactly why he should be a fixture in the Indian bowling line-up with another "Michelle Pfeiffer" at the Eden Gardens to give India the upper hand in the second Test match.
Earlier in the day it was another quiet but solid performer Wriddhiman Saha, who gave India the extra runs with a fine half-century. Saha, Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja give India's batting the kind of depth that any skipper would love and their regular contributions are saving the blushes for the top order which has still not fired as it should.
Cheteshwar Pujara is another player in the same quiet mould who is letting his bat speak for him. His partnership with Ajinkya Rahane rescued India from the precarious position it found itself. Both would be upset at missing out on hundreds because they had done all the hard work and deserved the prize of a Test century.
The pitch is two paced, a far cry from the ones the late Prabir da used to create at Eden Gardens. Batting will not be easy on this surface because of the tennis-ball-like bounce. On a surface like this no batsman feels he is set and has to be watchful all the while. India will be hoping to wrap up the Kiwi innings quickly and use the cushion of the lead to put themselves in an impregnable position. They will be hoping that their batsmen show their appreciation of the bowlers' efforts by some determined display with the bat.