Bumrah & Co show early promise as India take lead against Ireland

Arshdeep started quietly in the powerplay even as he tried to swing the ball back, hitting the hard lengths, but Prasidh did not take time to make an impact on his debut.

Published: 19th August 2023 09:35 AM  |   Last Updated: 19th August 2023 09:35 AM   |  A+A-

India's Jasprit Bumrah celebrates with teammates during the 1st T20 cricket match against Ireland, at The Village stadium in Malahide, Ireland, Friday, Aug. 18, 2023. (Photo | PTI)

Express News Service

CHENNAI:   Even as everyone was eagerly expecting to see Jasprit Bumrah in action against Ireland on Friday, the forecast did not look good. It seemed like he will have to wait till Sunday to run in with the Kookaburra ball in hand donning India colours.

However, the skies cleared in time as the Indian captain for the tour won the toss and opted to bowl. And his first ball was a leg stump half volley, which Andy Balbirnie flicked over the leg side to the ropes. A rather anti-climatic return one would think. 

However, over the next five balls, Bumrah went on to show that he is the same world-class bowler he was a year ago. Wicket - dot ball - dot ball - wicket - dot ball — it was a whole package that had length balls that came into the batter, two searing yorkers and more. Bumrah was well and truly back.

This series, as much as it is about Bumrah, is also about Prasidh Krishna and Arshdeep Singh as India are looking at their pace battery to decide on the options they could have. And they did not disappoint.

Arshdeep started quietly in the powerplay even as he tried to swing the ball back, hitting the hard lengths, but Prasidh did not take time to make an impact on his debut. In the first over, he went short to Harry Tector, who tried to play the ramp shot something that did not work for Lorcan Tucker, only to hand an easy catch to Tilak Varma.

He went on to remove George Dockrell with his typical back-of-length delivery that was hit straight to cover. With Ravi Bishnoi joining the party, the hosts were reduced to 59/6 in the eleventh over.

It seemed like a perfect chance for the Indian pace attack to capitalise and dismiss Ireland below the 100-run mark. However, Curtis Campher and Barry McCarthy had other ideas.

The duo took the attack to the Indian bowlers, especially in the death. Both Bumrah and Prasidh were carted around with Campher and McCarthy, respectively, smashing consecutive boundaries off them. The India duo struggled to nail the yorkers and Ireland made the most of it.

When Arshdeep did land one, he got rid of Campher for 39 runs from 33 balls. However, he too was taken apart by McCarthy for 22 runs in the final over as Ireland posted 139/7. In reply, India cruised to 47/2 in 6.5 overs before rain stopped play, but they were declared winners by the DLS method.

Despite the late struggle, Bumrah finished with 24/2 in his four overs. Not a bad start for a guy who hadn’t played any competitive cricket for 11 months, isn’t it?

Brief scores: Ireland 139/7 in 20 ovs (McCarthy 51 n.o, Campher 39; Bumrah 2/24, Prasidh 2/32) lost to India 47/2 in 6.5 ovs by two runs (DLS)

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