Former India pacer Zaheer Khan feels fast bowler Mukesh Kumar is going to be around the Indian Test set-up for a while.
Mukesh made his red-ball debut in the second Test against West Indies at Queen’s Park Oval in Port of Spain. The right-arm seamer picked up a couple of wickets in the hosts’ first innings while he bowled only five overs in the second innings before rain played spoilsport.
“He looked good. There's no doubt about it. He had a good outing out there in his first match, was very composed that showed good temperament. And when you're looking at the bench strength of this Indian team, it's looking very solid. You can see say that Mukesh Kumar is going to be around in this set up for a while,” said Zaheer while speaking to JioCinema.
He further stated that Mukesh needs that extra yard of pace to be really successful at the highest level, asking him to take a leaf out of Mohammed Siraj’s book.
Siraj claimed a five-wicket haul in West Indies’ first innings in Port of Spain and earned the Player-of-the-Match award.
“There is no doubt about that. It's up to him that how he takes things forward now from here and takes his bowling to the next level. I still felt that he needs to add that a yard or to his pace if he has to be really successful at this level, I can take a leaf out of Siraj’s book and how he has gone about doing his business,” he further stated.
Zaheer said Mukesh needs to be ready for his opportunities since he might not get many after Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammad Shami’s return to the side.
“You just need to nurture him and keep him with the team. He has to be ready every time because he's in that position where he might not get a long run. Bumrah might come back and Shami might come back. And then even if he's had a good outing, he might not get a get a game to play. So in that scenario, it’s important how you manage yourself because it can be a frustrating phase,” Zaheer remarked.