Bhuvneshwar Kumar was seen bowling for around 30-35 minutes at the indoor nets in Manchester on Tuesday. It is a big positive for the Indian team management. However, it is not sure that he will take the field against the West Indies on Thursday. The close to full run-up bowling session is an indicator that the hamstring niggle has improved. The 29-year-old Bhuvneshwar Kumar started with a short run-up but gradually increased it under Team India physio Patrick Farhart's observation. According to a report by IANS, Bhuvneshwar was also checked on by Indian captain Virat Kohli.
"It is indeed a positive sign as he bowled close to 30-35 minutes under Farhart's observation. It started with a small four or five step run-in to the wicket before he kept increasing the run-up at regular intervals. He was also checked on by skipper Virat Kohli during his net session. There was no visible discomfort and that is a good sign," a source was quoted as saying by IANS.
Earlier, Navdeep Saini had joined the Indian team in Manchester on Monday. The timing of the arrival combined with a lack of any fresh update on Bhuvneshwar's injury had raised quite a few eyebrows. But the Indian team has made it clear that Saini had joined the camp only as a net bowler.
Interestingly, Saini was named as one of the stand-by players when the Indian selectors had announced the 15-member squad for the World Cup. The BCCI sent out an official message saying: "Navdeep Saini has arrived in Manchester. Navdeep is the only net bowler here and he will train with the Indian cricket team."
Sources told IANS that Saini didn't come to England as a cover like Rishabh Pant. "He has joined as a net bowler and not as anybody's cover like Pant had come in as cover for Shikhar Dhawan."
After the game against Pakistan, skipper Virat Kohli had said: "Slight niggle for Bhuvi, he slipped on one of the footmarks. He's out for two -- maybe three -- games, but he should come back for us at some stage during this tournament. He is very important for us."
India are currently third in the points table with nine points in five games. The Virat Kohli-led side is yet to lose a game in the ongoing tournament.
(With IANS inputs)