From Irfan Pathan to Robin Uthappa: 6 talented Indian cricketers who stumbled at international level
India has an abundance of cricketing talent, but only a handful of few makes it to the international level. Despite reaching the international stage, some of them fail to impress on a prolonged basis. Here, we take a look at five such talented Indian cricketers.
When it comes to cricket in India, the talent found in the nation is unparallel to any other. Owing to the same, the competition for the international level has elevated in the past few years.
Over the years, numerous talented Indian cricketers have made it to the international level. But, not all have managed to impress on a prolonged basis, as we take a look at six such cricketers.
The former cricketer had an initial fairy-tale run in international cricket, scoring a double century in just his second Test. However, against the Windies, his technical flaws outshined his talents as he was exposed to the hard lengths. Also, he had some off-field controversies that affected his batting. Since then, he made irregular appearances for the side but wasn't consistent enough with his performances, while the bowlers exploited his weaknesses, thus ending his international career prematurely.
The former Indian spinner was tipped as the next big thing in the post-Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh era. Since his debut in 2009, he was a top draw among Indian spinners in the next four years, claiming more than 100 wickets. He was highly impactful in the longest format, as he was going good alongside Ravichandran Ashwin following Harbhajan's axe. However, he lost his place once Ravindra Jadeja burst into the scene. He was still the Man of the Match in 2013 during Sachin Tendulkar's final Test in Mumbai, which unfortunately turned out to be the former's last Test as well. Furthermore, his suspect bowling action in 2014 ultimately ruled him out of contention.
The talented batsman from Bengal was highly consistent in the domestic circuit. However, it still baffles us as to why he played so few matches for India. Having made his One-Day International debut in 2008, it was in the 2010-11 season that he consistently played for the side, scoring a century during this phase. Although he did well in a few games in 2012, he was dropped to favour an out of touch Rohit Sharma. He once again played a few games in 2014-15 before entirely fading out. Surprisingly, he never played a Test for the side despite having brilliant numbers in First-Class cricket. Maybe, being too injury-prone could be the reason for his inconsistency.
The Mumbai-based batsman is a legend in the domestic circuit and had an average career in Test cricket. He scored 1,944 runs in 31 Tests at an average of 34.1, including five centuries and a couple of double hundreds between 2000-08. However, he was not as consistent as one would have expected him to be. Despite scoring runs freely in the domestic circuit, he failed to make a similar impact in international cricket, leading to him falling out of favour by the national selectors post 2008. Last year, he retired from the sport, having scored 19,410 First-Class runs at 50.67, including 57 tons.
A prevalent name in Indian cricket, fans would surely agree that Uthappa was extremely inconsistent at playing for Team India. Between 2006-08, he was one of the consistent run-scorers in international cricket, especially in the limited-overs circuit. While he helped the side attain success in the ICC World T20 2007, following the 2008 Asia Cup, the emergence of Rohit and Virat Kohli led to him falling out of favour. Although he continued to score runs in the domestic circuit and the Indian Premier League, he was called back. Still, he just could not continue with the same aura, eventually leading him to be outcasted.
Pathan happens to be a big name in Indian cricket, as he was rated as one of the deadly swing bowlers in the world, who could move it both ways, along with sheer pace and york. He was a force at the international level between 2004-06. However, with the team management, especially under then-head coach Greg Chappell, to make him an all-rounder and changing his bowling action made him lose his swinging abilities. Although he burst into the scene again in 2007, helping the side win the 2007 WT20, he was dropped soon and was never considered again, while some injuries made it difficult for him. Although he successfully returned to the limited-overs side in 2012, he was dropped again since he was not the first-choice seamer anymore.
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