BENGALURU: As far as batting goes, Indian cricket is in good hands. The same can’t be said about bowling, particularly in the death overs.
However, winds of change seem to be blowing in that department too, going by what happened in the second T20 in Nagpur. Thanks to batsmen, England were in a strong position before Jasprit Bumrah stepped in to bowl. From a position of sealing the series, England lost, which makes Wednesday’s third T20 the decider. This format appears to be more of a batsman’s game, but the emergence of a death bowler like Bumrah is good news for India, after years of struggle in this aspect. That game-changing spell has earned Bumrah praise and appreciation from all over.
Getting wickets at the death is crucial, but so is the need to control the run flow. Bumrah has given away few runs. Also, the way he changed the pace of his deliveries, a couple of slower ones and then a yorker to send England into a tizzy, speaks volumes of the maturity and thinking power of the youngster.
With bowlers like Ishant Sharma around, there is no dearth of experience but India still struggled with bowling at the death. English and Australian batsmen have said that Bumrah is a tricky bowler to face as his deliveries skid. It looks like he is the answer for India’s death over bowling woes.
However, there are still a few issues with no-balls. “I’ve been working on that and worked with Anil sir on things like measuring the run-up. Hopefully, I’ll get some control over it,” said Bumrah.
The Gujarat speedster feels it is also important to bowl according to the size of the ground and that the same kind of deliveries do not work in every ground. Asked if back of length is key in T20 cricket, he said, “It depends on the wicket. The previous match was played in a bigger ground and the wicket was slower. Therefore, back of length and slower deliveries were key. When we play in smaller grounds, back of length and slower deliveries have a higher chance of going for runs. So, it is important to bowl according to the wicket.”
A guiding factor for Bumrah has been the vastly experienced Ashish Nehra. For someone who does not have too much international exposure, a senior pro’s guidance is most welcome. “He has always been helpful. We played in the World T20 together too. His guidance has always been valuable for me because he has played a lot of international cricket. He can tell us what we can try in tough situations,” Bumrah stated.
England’s Joe Root had this to add about Bumrah. “He deserves a lot of credit for the way he held his nerve at the back there,” he said on Tuesday. Bumrah has shown he can deliver in crunch situations. Hopefully, he will rise to the occasion in the decider on Wednesday.