'Every time I talked to him, we had an argument' - Ravi Shastri on this Indian player

Former India head coach Ravi Shastri revealed of his serious discussions with an Indian speedster regarding his fitness, which has kept him away from red-ball cricket.

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Shastri noted that the seamer was unavailable due to fitness concerns for various overseas tours in recent years.

India’s fast-bowling riches have grown steadily in the last few years across formats, with selectors being given a tough time for selection across formats. The ongoing IPL 2022 too has seen the speedsters excel, with Umran Malik, Mohsin Khan, Mukesh Choudhary being notable performers among others, not to forget the seasoned Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami who have had their moments of brilliance.

Meanwhile, Bhuvneshwar Kumar has continued to lead Sunrisers Hyderabad’s attack with 12 wickets and a miserly economy of 7.19. Quite stunningly, he delivered a wicket maiden in the 19th over to set up a thrilling three-run win for SRH over the Mumbai Indians on Tuesday.

Former head coach Ravi Shastri lauded Bhuvneshwar’s recent performances, and feels that the right-arm quick can have plenty to offer in Test cricket if he works harder on his fitness.

“I'm not surprised at all. Every time I meet Bhuvi (Bhuvneshwar Kumar), I have an argument with him. I say, if he can only focus and work harder on his fitness… his experience and ability in all formats of the game is remarkable. Every time we toured England or New Zealand, the guy was unfit,” Shastri told ESPNCricinfo.

“I said, ‘you lost yourself 50 red ball wickets in the last couple of years’. If he stays fit, he is an automatic choice in the Indian team, forget Sunrisers,”

Till date, Bhuvneshwar has 63 wickets from 21 Tests at 26.1. The 32-year-old was the Player of the Match in India’s historic 63-run win in the third Test against South Africa in Johannesburg in 2018. He hasn’t played a Test since.