How Umesh Yadav's bad luck denied him a five-wicket haul

Luck hasn't favoured Umesh Yadav in the first innings

Running in hard and bowling in the right areas continuously is a tough task for any fast bowler. On Indian pitches where there’s very little help (read: no help) for bowlers, it becomes ten times tougher. In the ongoing Test against England at Rajkot, Indian seamer Umesh Yadav started off with pace, swing, good line and length but no luck. Yadav has bowled 31.5 overs and has conceded 112 runs with just two wickets to his name. He has given 15 boundaries and gone about 3.51 runs per over. What these stats won’t tell anyone is that Yadav could have easily had a five-wicket haul to his name.

In his very first over, he got Alastair Cook to nudge one in the slip cordon. A low catch at second slips but a yard here or there and Yadav would have got India’s first breakthrough. Yadav’s companion Mohammad Shami would have given the breakthrough in the first over of the game itself had Ajinkya Rahane managed to hold on to Cook’s edge at gully. Both pacers were running in hard and producing chances one after the other. In the 10th over of the game, England opener Haseeb Hameed was put down at first slip by Murali Vijay when the 19-year-old was on 13.

Umesh Yadav, Indian Cricket team, India vs England

Umesh Yadav celebrates with the team after his first wicket
(Courtesy: AP/Rafiq Maqbool)

Day 1 ended but the misfortune for Umesh Yadav continued. As Yadav got ready for a fiery spell at Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow, his teammates still weren’t ready. Wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha dropped Stokes twice of Yadav’s bowling when the English batsman was in his 80s. Saha was unable to cling on to regular catches and Stokes went on to make the most of the opportunity and brought up his fourth international century.

Umesh Yadav got his first wicket in the form of Joe Root who was caught by Yadav himself. Yadav on his follow through caught the ball and while celebrating the wicket, couldn’t hold on to the ball. It seemed as if Yadav, too, had spilled the catch but the decision was given in India’s favour.

WATCH: Umesh Yadav’s catch to dismiss Joe Root

(Video Courtesy: Facebook/Indian Cricket Team)

In the past, a similar incident happened where South African cricketer Herschelle Gibbs spilled Steve Waugh’s catch while celebrating.

WATCH: Gibbs drops a sitter against Australia

(Video Courtesy:

Yadav finally got Ben Stokes’ wicket and was caught by none other than Saha. Stokes added 128 to the scoreboard. England have already posted more than 500 runs on the board. ‘Catches win matches’ – a simple mantra but India’s failure to implement it may cost the first Test against England.