What’s the story?
Jasprit Bumrah has been on the money in the Champions Trophy and the youngster seems to have hit another gear in the ongoing Champions Trophy. The pacer has been India’s go-to bowler in the tournament and has been a revelation of sorts in the past twelve months. He has shown signs of improvement ever since he first donned the Indian colours and was the Man of the Man in India’s decisive 8-wicket victory against South Africa on Sunday (June 11).
The win saw India go through to the top four of the ICC Champions Trophy as Bumrah clinched his first MoM award in one-day international cricket. However, playing in England for the first time, the English conditions seems to have taken him by surprise.
“It’s my first visit to England, and the wickets have been different to what I expected.But it’s been a good challenge for me, a good challenge to contain batsmen. To bowl in tough conditions gives you a lot of confidence. Usually, in England the ball swings, but over here the wickets are very hard and good to bat on,” stated the youngster in an interview with ICC.
In the semi-final of the ICC Champions Trophy, India are set to face Bangladesh, whose inspired performances have led them to make it this far in their first ever run at the Champions Trophy. Talking about the imminent clash, India’s ace with the ball, Jasprit Bumrah, however, quipped that they were not thinking about the clash at the moment.
“We’re not thinking about the semi-final right now. We’ll go to Birmingham, practice over there and then start thinking about it. It’s never easy in international cricket. You cannot be complacent or take any team lightly. On any given day, any team can beat you. It’s the same for us. We prepare well, try to execute whatever our plan is,” Bumrah added.
Also read: Cricketers of the Week: 4th June – 11th June
In case you didn’t know...
Bumrah made his debut for India against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground in January last year. Since then, the man with the unorthodox bowling action has impressed one and all with his ability.
India’s match against South Africa was exceedingly crucial as the team losing the contest had to bid farewell to the tournament. India’s bowlers, especially Bumrah, stepped up when it mattered the most and bundled up AB de Villiers’ men for just 191 in less than 45 overs.
The Mumbai Indians player was the pick of the bowlers with his 2 wickets for just 28 runs in 8 overs.
The youngster’s ability to bowl riveting death overs has not been overlooked by Virat Kohli. Often, he is the one who is handed the ball (and the responsibility) in these crunch overs of the innings. Reflecting on the same, the man from Ahmedabad revealed that it feels great that to have the captain put so much faith in him.
Talking about India’s game plan in the South Africa match, he said that the bowlers just looked at containing the Proteas by bowling good, hard lengths. He also added that since the wicket did not offer much assistance, the bowling unit decided to stick with its basics and the as a result, each bowler chipped in and restrained the batsmen from going big.
A dependable performance from Bumrah will be essential to India’s chances against Bangladesh on Thursday (June 9). His job up front would be to cause troubles for Tamim Iqbal, who is third on the leading run-scorers list of the tournament.
If India get through this test, they will face the winner of the England-Pakistan clash for a chance at defending their trophy.
You always knew that Bumrah would be India’s marquee bowler in this tournament, following up to his exceptional performance in the Indian Premier League this year. His death bowling oozed the confidence of a veteran. Even MS Dhoni had difficulty scoring against the pace and precision of the right-handed bowler.
He has truly started coming into his own now and his definitely an asset in India’s hands. His talent needs to be honed with care for him to turn into one of the greatest bowlers the country has ever produced.