World Cup 2019: One change India should make for the Australia match
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India had an ideal start to the World Cup with an emphatic win over South Africa. Their bowling was especially great, with all the bowlers pitching in. Jasprit Bumrah and Yuzvendra Chahal were the pick of the bowlers.
After such an impressive show, the temptation to go with an unchanged side will be obviously very high and justifiably so. As they say, don’t fix something isn't broken. But there is one place that should be debated, for sure.
That is the place of the second seamer – Bhuvneshwar Kumar. He may have done reasonably well in the match, with a respectable figure of two for 44 runs. But he has not looked impressive for some time now.
He was far from his best during the IPL. It’s true that IPL performances should not be held against somebody as it is a different format. True, but then that is the most recent tournament before the World Cup and performances or lack thereof, cannot be completely ignored.
Even before the IPL, he had shown signs of deteriorating form. It is his experience and the team management’s faith in him which have kept him in the side. But against Australia, both the new ball bowlers and not just one, need to bowl well. Australian batting side is top heavy, with both Finch and Warner capable of tearing away if given a chance.
Bumrah, with his pace and accuracy, is likely to keep one end tight and create wicket-taking opportunities. But lack of pace from the other side, in conditions not likely to be conducive to swing, Bhuvneshwar Kumar could give that much-needed relief to the Australian top order batsmen.
So, in such a scenario, the Indian team management must seriously consider bringing in the in-form Mohammed Shami in place of Bhuvneshwar Kumar. He has the extra pace, and as he has shown in recent times, he is a much more disciplined bowler these days.
With Bumrah and Shami bowling in tandem, India will have its best chance of putting the pressure on the Australian tip order from the word go. That could go a long way in determining the outcome of the match.
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