The veteran Indian fast bowler, Mohammed Shami has been going through a purple patch in his career and it has enhanced further after the first game of India’s tour of New Zealand. He accounted for the dismissal of both the Kiwi openers in the first ODI, and he cleaned them up by running through their defenses. Later in the game, the pacer scalped one more wicket to finish with excellent figures of 6-2-19-3.
For his brilliant bowling display, Shami has adjudged the Player of the Match as India sealed the game in an emphatic manner. After the game, in a post-match show on Cricbuzz, former Indian pacer Zaheer Khan analyzed the performance of the Bengal pacer. He was asked by Harsha Bhogle if Shami has booked his place in India’s World Cup squad with his consistent performances in the few games. Replying to the same, Zaheer noted that Shami has done so but to an extent. He pointed out that Shami will have to play a new role when Jasprit Bumrah comes back to the side.
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Zaheer elaborated, “Almost, yes. Again, it is going to be critical on how you use Mohammad Shami. You have to have a defined role for your third seamer. At the moment, Shami is bowling with the new ball. Bumrah is going to be back in the side, and he will probably take the new ball. So, Shami will have to alter his role in the side.”
Sharing his thoughts further, Khan said that Shami should perhaps finish his quota of overs before the 40-overs mark. He cited that Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Bumrah have been bowling excellently in the slog overs, and hence, when they unite again, Shami will fit in the side as the third seamer. He wants Shami’s role in the side to be defined very clearly by the management.
Zaheer explained, “Looking at his bowling style, I think he should be finishing his overs before the 40 overs mark. Bumrah will be taking the load in the death overs… Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Bumrah have been bowling the last 7-8 overs consistently well for the team. So keeping that in mind, and the fact that Bumrah will come back in to the side, Shami will bowl one change, and hence, his role in the side has to be defined clearly.”