Shikhar Dhawan might have starred with the bat as India easily chased down New Zealand's paltry total in the second ODI in Pune to level the three-match ODI series. However, the Indian bowlers started the demolition job with pacers Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah wreaking havoc on the visiting batsmen. Dhawan was effusive in his praise for the bowlers, saying they did half the job by restricting New Zealand. But the left-hander had special praise for one bowler, who in his view, is the best death overs bowler in the world.
"He (Bhuvneshwar) has raised his bar and I feel he is at a very high level. His control over the bowling is very good. Not just at the start but other variations. Even when he bowls slower ball and knuckle ball he makes sure he lands it in the right areas," he said.
"The way he got that left-hander out (Colin Munro), it was because he pitched that ball in the right area and even when it comes in the death over, he is the best bowler. Best bowler in the world I guess, the way he bowls Yorkers.
Bhuvneshwar was the pick of the Indian bowlers, taking three for 45 as India restricted New Zealand to 230 for nine.
"I have seen him in the IPL and in the Indian team, he has bowled consistently well. He has improved a lot. And I feel that he has got a lot of belief in himself and that's what is showing out there," added Dhawan.
The pacer has been brilliant in recent times. He topped the bowling charts in IPL 2017, ending the season as the highest wicket-taker. Bhuvneshwar, who is also Dhawan's teammate with the Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL, took 26 wickets in 14 matches with a best of 5/18 and pretty much held the 'Purple Cap' for the entirety of the season.
Dhawan scored a gritty 68 to lead India's chase and he was ably supported by Dinesh Karthik, who was unbeaten on 64.
"About Dinesh I will say that he has worked hard and scored so many runs in domestic (cricket) that he is being rewarded for that and has made a place in the team again. He is one of the best middle-order player, with the skills and shots he has and he is proving himself.
"The way he played the knock today and in the last game when the team was in trouble, his 30-35 runs, were beneficial. When he bats, his strike rotation is good, which reduces pressure on the other batsman."
(With PTI Inputs)