Kolkata: Chinaman Kuldeep Yadav bagged a hat-trick as India rode a dominant bowling performance to bowl out Australia for 202 and win the second One-Day International (ODI) by 50 runs at the Eden Gardens on Thursday.
In three successive deliveries, Kuldeep (3/54) took the wickets of Mathew Wade, Ashton Agar and Pat Cummins in the 33rd over to become the second bowler in limited overs cricket to script a hat-trick at this venue and only the third Indian to record the rare feat in 50 overs cricket.
Speaking about his feat, Kuldeep said that he never dreamt about it and that it is a special one for him.
"Not really (could never dream it)," Kuldeep said.
Kuldeep was struggling a bit when he was asked to bowl and Glenn Maxwell further demoralised the wrist-spinner by hitting him for two sixes. However, Kuldeep came back strongly to claim a hat-trick.
"Initially I was struggling to bowl in a particular area. It's a game of cricket, everything happens. Last match, where I was hit for three sixes in an over, was a learning experience."
You wont see a better hat trick ball than that from Kuldeep Yadav! So happy for the young man.#HatTrick-Sanjay Manjrekar (@sanjaymanjrekar) September 21, 2017
Hat-tricks for India:-Bharath Seervi (@SeerviBharath) September 21, 2017
3 in 3 and all of them through different modes of dismissal, that39;s the way to do it! Shabash, @imkuldeep18 Lets do a 5 for-Suresh Raina (@ImRaina) September 21, 2017
When asked what he thought before bowling the hat-trick ball, Kuldeep said, "I 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."
well bowled, Kuldeep Yadav three balls turned a forgettable outing into one to cherish for the rest of your life!-Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) September 21, 2017
India skipper Virat Kohli heaped praise on the young wrist-spinner and said that both Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep bowl with a lot of heart.
"Two young spinners bowling with a lot of heart, speaks volumes about their characters. Really augurs well for us how the team is shaping up," Kohli said.
Defending 253, Bhuvneshwar Kumar set the tone early in the innings and the skipper was extremely pleased with the fast bowlers' effort.
"We didn't feel like we had enough on the board at the break. But we knew if we had a good start we have a good chance of defending it. We knew if we don't take wickets it would be difficult. To be honest, the wicket wasn't easy to bat on throughout the day. Bhuvi's spell became even more important because we knew the wrist-spinners would do damage in the middle," Kohli said.
Bhuvneshwar took three wickets and gave just 9 runs in 6.1 overs that he bowled and the swing bowler was all over the Australian openers.
"The deliveries he got the batsmen out with were unplayable. You can count on Bhuvi for getting the breakthroughs," Kohli said.
Kohli led from the front with a brilliant 92 on a two-paced Eden wicket and speaking on his knock, he said, "I always try to create that kind of motivation for myself. Sometimes things don't come off for you but I try and stay in the same zone. It wasn't easy to bat, plus the bowling attack was quality as well. Came off today, so it looked nice. Didn't come off in Chennai, so it didn't look nice."