India’s much-awaited tour of England began with a lot of fireworks on Old Trafford pitch, courtesy KL Rahul and Kuldeep Yadav. However, as expected, the series has started to provide as much spice off the field as well. England all-rounder David Willey has accused the visitors of not playing within the spirit of the game after the Indian bowlers repeatedly pulled out of their delivery strides during first Twenty20 International clash in Manchester on Tuesday. Willey was referring to the left-arm wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav’s habit of suddenly pulling out of his run-up when bowling to Jos Buttler. An annoyed Willey was even involved in a heated exchange of words with Bhuvneshwar Kumar when the fast-bowler stopped in the final over of England’s innings.
“I’m guessing, but I think he (Bhuvneshwar) was looking to see what I was going to do,” Willey told reporters.
“They did that a few times. The spinners did it a couple of times. I’m not sure what the rules are on that.
“I don’t particularly like it. I don’t think it is necessarily in the spirit of cricket.
“It’s not my job to comment on that too much on what they should or shouldn’t be doing. Personally, I don’t think I’d do that. I don’t think it is great.
“They have a few fiery characters and that is part and parcel of cricket,” Willey added.
“It has gone on for years. I don’t mind a bit of confrontation. I have had my fair share of it in the past. If it comes my way I am quite happy to get involved.”
England struggled against the spin of Kuldeep as the left-armer claimed a five-for by giving away just 24 runs. Needing 160 to win, Rahul then scored an unbeaten 101 off 54 balls as India recorded an emphatic eight-wicket win to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match T20I series.
Ahead of the second T20I in Cardiff on Friday, England are practicing against Merlyn, their spin-bowling machine to deal with the crafty Indian left-arm wrist-spinner.