Former Indian selector Saba Karim is happy with the return of pace bowlers Jasprit Bumrah and Harshal Patel for the upcoming T20I series against Australia. Both pace bowlers missed the Asia Cup due to injuries and are making a comeback after undergoing rehab at the NCA in Bengaluru as well.
While speaking to India News, Karim said: “With the return of Jasprit Bumrah and Harshal Patel, our bowling is looking robust. I don’t think there will be many problems, but intense competition will be vital in the T20 World Cup preparations. Playing against strong teams will be beneficial. It’s the right call that India have planned such series to ensure we are fully prepared for the T20 World Cup.”
However, India will play three T20Is each against World T20 Champions Australia and South Africa before the ICC tournament. They will look to address their concerns in the six T20Is before leaving for Australia as well.
Saba Karim also said, “We must take wickets with the new ball [in upcoming matches]. If we take wickets in the powerplay overs, it means our bowling is strong. Another important thing is to bowl well in the last couple of overs, whether bowling first or defending a total.”These two areas are a big concern for the Indian team and must be solved [ahead of the T20 World Cup].”
He also added that Mohammed Shami, who has been ruled out of the T20I series against Australia due to COVID-19, should return for the T20I series against South Africa.
“It is very unfortunate for Shami and the Indian cricket team that now he will be unavailable. I hope he recovers soon and gets a chance to play against South Africa in the upcoming T20Is. His inclusion in the Indian team for T20 World Cup means selectors still look to him. Thus, the selectors will observe Jasprit Bumrah and Harshal Patel regarding their fitness [in upcoming matches]. These two bowlers can cover bases for India, which we lacked in the Asia Cup. We need economical bowlers for the death overs,” Saba Karim concluded.