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Bumrah proves his reliability again; why is he the 'go-to man' for Rohit?

T20 World Cup 2024: Jasprit Bumrah was rewarded as player of the match for his 3-14 against Pakistan. What makes Bumrah a special bowler?

T20 World Cup 2024, IND vs PAK_ Jasprit Bumrah took 3-14 against Pakistan at New York _  Walking Wicket (Photo_ ©BCCI_X)
Jasprit Bumrah took 3-14 against Pakistan at New York (Photo: ©BCCI/X)

India vs England Visakhapatnam Test in February 2024, Mumbai vs Bengaluru at Wankhede in IPL 2024, and India vs Pakistan in New York in the T20 World Cup 2024: What’s common between these three matches? It’s Jasprit Bumrah. The India pacer has been magical in these three matches, bowling his heart out, using clever variations to fox the opponents and single-handedly winning the matches for his team. 

The Visakhapatnam Test saw Bumrah take six wickets on day 2, on a track that had little help for the pacers. But he took the pitch out of the equation and plotted England’s downfall. Something similar happened in the Wankhede match against Bengaluru in IPL 2024 where Bumrah took a 5-fer on a batting beauty to restrict the opponents for below 200. Bumrah rose to the occasion again when India needed him the most to restrict Pakistan six runs short of equalling India’s score of 119 in the 2024 World T20 clash. It was his magic that did wonders for India again.

Dissecting Bumrah’s performance against Pakistan 

Pakistan were cruising at one stage to overhaul a small target of 120 with opener Mohammad Rizwan batting brilliantly on a tricky pitch. In came Bumrah to bowl Rizwan out in the first ball of his second spell to break the back of Pakistan’s batting line-up. Still, it was either side’s game until Bumrah came back in the penultimate over to dismiss the dangerous Iftikhar Ahmed to all but kill the game and help India win another World T20 match against their arch-rivals. 

Earlier, he broke the threatening opening stand of 26 runs between Babar Azam and Rizwan with a ball that rose awkwardly to take the former’s outside edge into the hands of the slip fielder. These three wickets came at critical phases of the game and helped India wrest the momentum from Pakistan.

It can be rightly said that the difference between the two sides was Bumrah who single-handedly won the crucial tie. This pace bowling legacy of winning matches single-handedly for India consistently was absent until Bumrah came to the party. Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma can win matches on their ability alone, Bumrah too is on course with such batters as genuine match-winners for India. 

T20 World Cup 2024, IND vs PAK_ Jasprit Bumrah took 3-14 against Pakistan at New York _  Walking Wicket (Photo_ ©BCCI_X)
Jasprit Bumrah is Rohit Sharma's go-to Man (Photo: ©BCCI/X)
Rohit-Bumrah: A skipper-trump card duo for the ages 

It’s no surprise that Jasprit Bumrah is the go-to man for captain Rohit in critical matches. But it is also Rohit’s credit for using Bumrah judiciously to outthink and outsmart the opponents. 

Rohit and Bumrah’s partnership as teammates started in the 2013 IPL when the bowler first broke into Mumbai Indians’ camp, long before making his international debut. The two have combined to develop the art of defending low scores and Bumrah has been at the forefront of such events. 

He took two wickets when Mumbai defended 129 against Rising Pune Supergiants in the 2017 IPL final. He was also the man of the match for his 2/14 in the 2019 IPL final against Chennai Super Kings as Mumbai defended 149. Both finals were won by just a run. 

Hence, Rohit knows best when to use Bumrah so he can turn the game around in a jiffy. And it happened in the Pakistan clash as well. Rohit brought back Bumrah for his second spell when Rizwan was looking to finish off the chase. But Bumrah stuck to the basics, bowled a perfect in-swinger and Rizwan did the rest by playing a false stroke and taking on one of the best bowlers in T20Is. 

Rohit’s handling of Bumrah has been exceptional. Bumrah too has reposed faith put on by his skipper by looking to pick up wickets every time he has been asked to bowl. Bumrah’s best quality has been his unpredictable bowling. It is difficult to predict what Bumrah would bowl next as he plans his bowling well in advance to outsmart the opponents. It won’t be wrong to say he can bowl six different balls in an over and it gives little time for the opposition batters to adjust and score runs. This unpredictable bowling makes him a once-in-a-lifetime bowler. It bodes well for India as they are certain to move to the next round in 2024 World T20 with Bumrah set to make a difference. 


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