Kuldeep Yadav (born 14 December 1994) is an Indian cricketer who plays for India and for Uttar Pradesh in domestic cricket and for Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL. He started out as a fast bowler at academy level, but his coach advised him to become a rare left-arm unorthodox spin bowler considering his build, which was ill-suited for fast bowling. He played for India Under-19 cricket team in the 2014 ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup where he took a hat-trick against Scotland which brought him into the limelight.
|Born||14 December 1994|
Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, India
|Bowling||Left-arm unorthodox spin|
|Test debut (cap 288)||25 March 2017 v Australia|
|Last Test||3 January 2019 v Australia|
|ODI debut (cap 217)||23 June 2017 v West Indies|
|Last ODI||11 August 2019 v West Indies|
|ODI shirt no.||23|
|T20I debut (cap 69)||9 July 2017 v West Indies|
|Last T20I||10 February 2019 v New Zealand|
|T20I shirt no.||23|
|Domestic team information|
|2014–present||Kolkata Knight Riders (squad no. 23)|
Source: ESPNcricinfo, 11 August 2019
Kuldeep Yadav was born and raised in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, the son of a brick kiln owner. In an interview, he revealed that it was his father who wanted him to continue playing cricket and even took him to a coach (Kapil Pandey). Inspired by bowling greats Wasim Akram and Zaheer Khan, he wanted to become a left-arm seamer. However, given his slight build, his coach insisted on him becoming a wrist-spin bowler as he was impressed with the turn and variations he was providing unknowingly at the trials. Since then, he started following and watching videos of Shane Warne's bowling and made him his role model.
I keep watching videos of Warne. His grip of the ball, length of deliveries and use of the crease are unbeatable. I try to learn from the footage— Kuldeep Yadav in an interview
He also revealed that earlier in his life, there was a dark phase in his life when he thought of giving up cricket and committing suicide, when he was not selected in the Uttar Pradesh’s under-15 team.
In January 2018, he was bought back by KKR in the 2018 IPL auction for INR 5.8 crores.. In the 2019 edition, he played only 9 matches, taking 4 wickets and scoring a total of 12 runs. He broke down during the match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Royal Challengers Bangalore, at Eden Gardens, because Moeen Ali (RCB) thrashed 3 sixes and 2 fours during his last over. This total of 27 runs left Kuldeep Yadav in tears. However, he managed to take Ali's wicket on the last ball. In the total of the 4 overs bowled, Kuldeep Yadav gave away 59 runs. Kuldeep Yadav did not play any further match in the 2019 edition of IPL, after the encounter between RCB and KKR at Eden Gardens.
On September 21, 2017, he became the third bowler for India to take a hat-trick in an ODI after Chetan Sharma and Kapil Dev. He took a hat-trick at Eden Gardens, Kolkata, against Australia, on 21 September 2017.
He was selected in the Indian cricket team to play against West Indies in October 2014 but did not appear in any match. In February 2017 he was added to India's Test squad for their one-off match against Bangladesh. He made his Test debut for India against Australia on 25 March 2017, at the Dharamshala Cricket Stadium, taking four wickets in the first innings. Kuldeep Yadav is the first left-arm wrist spin bowler to represent India national cricket team in Test cricket. He is also only the third such bowler in Test cricket to take four wickets on debut.
In June 2017, he was named in India's squad for a limited overs tour to the West Indies. He made his One Day International (ODI) debut for India against the West Indies on 23 June 2017. However, during this game, he was unable to bowl a single delivery as the game ended with no result due to rain during the first innings while India was batting. He was ultimately able to bowl in the next match of the series, where he took three wickets. He made his Twenty20 International (T20I) debut for India against the West Indies on 9 July 2017.
On 3 July 2018, Kuldeep Yadav took his first five-for in a T20I and also became the first left-arm wrist-spin bowler to take five wickets in a T20I during the first T20I against England, in fact he also became only the third Indian after Yuzvendra Chahal and Bhuvneshwar Kumar to take a five-wicket haul in a T20I.
On 12 July 2018 during the first ODI against England, he grabbed his maiden five-wicket haul in an ODI and also set a new record for registering the best bowling figures by a left-arm spin bowler of any kind in an ODI (6/25). He also shattered the record of Shahid Afridi for registering the best bowling figures by a spinner against England in ODIs and also broke Afridi's record for recording the best ever bowling figures by a spinner in an ODI in England.
After an impressive showing against Australia, in the T20I series of India tour of Australia 2018/19, Kuldeep jumped 20 places to claim a career-best third position in the MRF ICC T20I Bowlers Rankings, updated on 26th November 2018.
On 6 January 2019, in the fourth Test against Australia at the SCG and in his first Test match on Australian soil, he took his second five-wicket haul (5/99) in Tests, in Australia's first innings.
On 11 February 2019, he moved to second position in the T20I Bowlers Rankings. In April 2019, he was named in India's squad for the 2019 Cricket World Cup. On 30 June 2019, in the match against England, Kuldeep played in his 50th ODI.
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