India took a surprising decision in the second Test against England by dropping ace bowler Jasprit Bumrah and picking Mohammed Siraj who had a terrific series in Australia. Bumrah is without a doubt the spearhead of India’s pace attack and in such a crucial game, it was a surprise to see him dropped. The reason given by captain Virat Kohli at the toss was that he had been given rest.
The decision divided social media with some stating that the best bowler will have to be played irrespective of the workload in such crunch situations while some others stated that a key bowler like Bumrah shouldn’t be overworked and when there is bench strength, it has to be utilized. Former Indian cricketers Gautam Gambhir and Sunil Gavaskar were also of different opinions on the matter.
Gambhir welcomes move; Gavaskar does not
Sunil Gavaskar spoke to Star Sports about the decision to leave out Bumrah and criticized it saying, “You don’t rest your number one bowler in the name of workload management. Jasprit Bumrah is India’s number one bowler with the new ball while Ravichandran Ashwin is the number one spinner. When you have lost the opening game of such a crucial series, you can’t rest your number one pacer. I am baffled by Bumrah’s snub as there is a seven-day recovery time after the second Test match.”
Gautam Gambhir on the other hand backed it saying, “I think it is a good decision to rest him. He will be ready to go in the pink ball Test match. There is nothing for the fast bowlers here and he has bowled a lot of overs in Australia and the first Test match, so I think it was a very good decision from the team management’s point of view. You would want to have Jasprit Bumrah for the crucial Test matches, the pink ball one and the fourth Test and there will be hardly any gap between the two. So, I think it is the right decision.”
India will resume day 2 on 300/6 with Rishabh Pant and Axar Patel at the crease.