Kolkata: The legendary Sachin Tendulkar and another former captain Sourav Ganguly led the applause as left-arm spinner Kuldeep Yadav drew all-round praise for his match-winning hat-trick against Australia in the second ODI here.
Kuldeep returned figures of 3/54, taking consecutive wickets of Mathew Wade, Ashton Agar and Pat Cummins in the 33rd over to become only the third Indian, after Chetan Sharma and Kapil Dev, to record the rare feat in ODI cricket.
Read More: Team India Reclaim Top Spot In ICC Rankings
“@imkuldeep18 & @yuzi_chahal didn’t just bowl well but actually spun the game in India’s favour! Superb batting @imVkohli & @ajinkyarahane88,” Tendulkar wrote on his twitter page. Ganguly on his part said: “It was a special spell. He bowled brilliantly. He still has a long way to go and is an asset for the team.”
Incidentally Kapil’s feat in the 1991 Asia Cup final against Sri Lanka had also come at the Eden, which was a witness to Harbhajan Singh’s famous hat-trick during the 2001 Kolkata Test against Australia.
Asked to compare Harbhajan’s hat-trick with that of Kuldeep’s, Ganguly, who was the then captain of the Indian team, didn’t wish to get into comparisons. “I don’t want to compare, it’s not easy to get a hat-trick,” Ganguly, who led India to the remarkable victory in 2001 Test against Australia, added.
Kuldeep’s IPL captain Gautam Gambhir also seemed ecstatic with his performance. “Colour of ur outfit may hav changed frm @KKRiders purple to @BCCI blue but d mystery around ur bowling remains d same….bravo @imkuldeep18,” his KKR captain Gautam Gambhir wrote on his Twitter page.
Former cricketer Mohammad Kaif was also effusive in his praise for the spinner from his home state of Uttar Pradesh. “Kuldeep Yadav is a rare & special talent. Delighted with his progress. Great hat-trick @imkuldeep18 & a wonderful victory for India.