With Team India yet to announce a replacement for Jasprit Bumrah, former Pakistan skipper, Wasim Akram has thrown a unique name in the hat. As the team management continues to mull over a possible replacement for their premier fast bowler, who last week was ruled out due to a back injury, several fast-bowling options have come to the fore. Earlier, Deepak Chahar, thanks to his handy batting, along with Mohammed Shami was the front-runner to replace Bumrah.
On Wednesday, reports emerged that the fast-bowling trio of Shami, Mohammed Siraj, and Shardul Thakur will fly to Australia on Thursday to join the Indian contingent. And it is quite possible that one of these three will be announced as Bumrah’s official replacement. However, Wasim Akram wants to see Umran Malik in the Indian squad.
Talking to the reporters, as per the quotes in Hindustan Time, Wasim Akram said, “You see that guy? Umran Malik… he is quick. India took him to Ireland and he got hammered. It happens in T20, but you got to stick with him. If I were in think tank, then I will have him in the squad all the time. The more he plays, the better he will become. Experience in Twenty20 matters a lot.”
Umran Malik was shortlisted as one of the net bowlers, along with Kuldeep Sen to travel to Australia but the 22-year-old apparently ran into some visa issues, due to which he is yet to depart for Australia. Umran earned a name for himself with his pace but he needs to be a lot more disciplined with his line and length before being given a long run with the Indian team.
Weighing in on the same, Wasim Akram explained, “Unfortunately, Twenty20 format is not for bowlers. The format is the need of the hour, it is entertaining and it’s picked up worldwide. Bowlers should understand that they will be hammered once in a while, which they do now. Flat decks become one-dimensional. The pitches in Dubai offered a bit for the bowlers and once it is set then the next day it is better for batters. That should be the future of the format.”