The 33-year-old pacer though didn’t miss a single moment of action after returning home and caught all the action on his television and cheered for the Indian team as the visitors went on to beat Australia in their backyard to clinch the four Test Border Gavaskar Trophy 2-1.
Umesh was also not part of the home Test series vs England, which India won 3-1.
Now though he is fit and raring to go. He made the cut for the mega squad for the World Test Championship final and the 5 Test series vs England after that and has also secured a place in the 15 man squad announced for the WTC Final vs New Zealand, which begins on June 18 at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton.
Umesh spoke to TimesofIndia.com before the Indian team left for England, after he was selected for the tour of the UK.
“It is always good to get back into the team. I was disappointed to miss out on the last two games in Australia after I suffered an injury. I was really sad because I had to leave the team mid-way. But we went on to win the series. It was the greatest win for India. I am calling it the greatest series win because of the way we were getting injured and the circumstances that the team found itself in and how despite all that we went on to lift the trophy. It was huge,” Umesh told Timesofindia.com in an exclusive interview before leaving for the UK.
After losing the first Test against Australia in Adelaide, India won the Melbourne Test (by 8 wickets), drew the Sydney Test, and registered a three-wicket win in the Brisbane Test to thump Australia in their own den.
“I am proud that I was part of that team. I had to return home after the injury but I celebrated in front of the television set. That was an emotional and proud moment for me, I have recovered now and have been included in the squad to play the WTC final. I am confident that we will win the title. It feels surreal that I am once again with the team,” an excited Umesh told TimesofIndia.com.
Apart from Umesh, India have included Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj and Ishant Sharma in the pace department in the 15 man squad for the WTC final.
Will Umesh make the cut for the playing XI?
“I have always given my best whenever I get an opportunity. I have prepared myself in such a way that no matter what the conditions or situation, I can go and bowl and help my team achieve success. I have become a bowler for any situation and condition. I just want to go and perform,” Umesh, who has played 48 Tests in his career so far, claiming 148 wickets, including three five-wicket and one ten-wicket haul to his name, further said.
(Photo credit: Umesh Yadav Twitter)
The Virat Kohli-led Indian team played a four-day intra-squad match to get into the groove.
On the other hand, New Zealand will be high on confidence after winning the two-match Test series 1-0 against England, leapfrogging India to become the number one Test team in the ICC rankings.
After the first Test vs England ended in a draw, the Black Caps defeated the English in their own backyard by eight wickets in the second Test at Edgbaston and have their tails up ahead of the WTC final.
For many, the WTC final is a very special clash. Umesh, who has 29 scalps so far in 7 WTC matches, though, wants to treat the World Test Championship final just like any other Test match.
“I am not thinking of it as a final hurdle. I am taking it as a normal match. This won’t create any pressure on me. We have played a lot of games, defeated top teams to reach here. We are not going to miss out on this. I am ready to put in more than 100 percent in the final,” he further told TimesofIndia.com.
“I want to have that satisfaction that I gave my 100 percent when I walk back to the pavilion at the end of day’s play. After the Australia triumph, it’s time to clinch the WTC title. I am confident we will do it,” Umesh signed off.