File photo of Jasprit Bumrah© AFP
Jasprit Bumrah’s workload might have increased in Mohammed Shami’s absence but India’s pace spearhead is in a much better shape right now in terms of fitness to handle the rigours of Test cricket, feels former all-rounder Irfan Pathan. Bumrah, who had a lower back stress fracture in 2022, underwent a surgery in New Zealand and was out of competitive cricket for a period of 11 months. He returned during Ireland T20I series in August last year and has remained injury free since then. But the absence of Shami, who is out with a left ankle injury since his stellar performance in last year’s ODI World Cup, has definitely put extra pressure on Bumrah, who is leading India’s attack against England in the ongoing five-match Test series. “Obviously, Shami’s absence does have an effect but that does not mean chances of injury will increase for Bumrah. His action is absolutely perfect now,” Pathan told PTI TV.
Since his return Bumrah has increased his run-up by a step and also a bigger follow through which puts less load on the back because of his slinging action.
Pathan said there is definitely extra pressure on Bumrah in Shami’s absence as the duo share a healthy bowling partnership.
“When there is pressure from both sides, whether it is Shami taking wickets from one side or Bumrah working quietly from one side…
“Bumrah is taking wickets and Shami is working quietly, their partnership not only reduces the pressure on each other but also augurs well for the team,” the cricketer-turned-commentator said.
Pathan is in awe of Bumrah’s dedication and attitude towards the traditional format of the game.
“I have been a big fan of Jasprit Bumrah’s attitude, especially in Test cricket, the way he has given priority to Test cricket despite injuries,” he said.
“Even if he gets injured, I will salute him because he is trying his best. We all have to always keep this in mind.” Having lost the first Test against England by 28 runs in Hyderabad, India will look to bounce back and level the series when the second match starts in Visakhapatnam on Friday.
Topics mentioned in this article