Kolkata: India's wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha has said Bhuvneshwar Kumar's surprise inclusion was done keeping in mind the grassy Eden Gardens wicket, as the seamer scalped a five-for to tightened the noose around New Zealand in the second cricket Test on Saturday.
New Zealand were struggling at 128 for seven in their first innings in reply to India's 316 all out on day two, still 188 runs behind.
"We make our team as per the situation. Umesh (Yadav) played in last match, but we thought the wicket would be a bit more seamer-friendly, so Bhuvi came into the team," Saha, who scored an unbeaten 54 to take India to 316 in the first innings, said at the post-match news conference.
The play was held up for two and half hours for a rain delay and the final session was played under lights. Saha said India benefited from it. "There was more movement under lights. The vision also gets affected under lights. Bhuvi and (Mohammad) Shami bowled in the right areas. We want to get them all out as quickly as possible on Sunday morning."
Bhuvneshwar, who had taken a five-wicket haul in the West Indies Test series last month but was dropped in Kanpur, made
a comeback with a bang with his 5/33 that rattled the Kiwis. This was Bhuvneshwar's fourth five-wicket haul and second in back-to-back series.
Replacing Umesh, Bhuvneshwar's inclusion was the surprise, but he first bowled Martin Guptill (13) and Henry Nicholls (1)
before returning to haunt the Kiwis once again under lights when he took three wickets including the scalps of Mitchell Santner (11) and Matt Henry (0) in successive balls in a rain-interrupted day.
The Eden Gardens wicket was relaid recently and it was the first match on the surface, something that made the team think tank to go for the masterstroke in Bhuvneshwar. "Some balls stayed low while some had extra bounce and carry. Maybe in one or two matches I had seen such kind of wicket here. It's a result-oriented wicket which is good for both the teams," he said, while hailing the wicket.
"Obviously he's a very good bowler. We have a very good bench strength. He really bowled well. Also credit should be given to (Ravindra) Jadeja, Shami and (Ravichandran) Ashwin. We will look to carry that forward," he added.