Former India fielding coach R Sridhar has shared an incident from the 2019 Test match between India and Australia, revealing that fast bowler Jasprit Bumrah had expressed his concerns about the pitch at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) ahead of the final Test match. In his book “Coaching Beyond”, Sridhar recounted that after taking a five-wicket haul in the third Test at Melbourne, Bumrah felt physically and mentally drained as they prepared for the last match. He confided to the-then bowling coach, Bharat Arun, that the pitch was dull, and there was nothing in it for the faster bowlers.
Sridhar described how Arun was willing to listen to Bumrah’s concerns, and the fast bowler proposed that he would bowl slowly, well within himself, and take out the Test match. Arun, however, cautioned that bowling slowly might give the batsman the confidence that they had played him well, and they could use it against him in future games. If a player like Shaun Marsh or Marnus Labuschagne played Bumrah out, he would get the mental edge over him, and it would be challenging for him to counter it in the future.
Bumrah has been one of the most lethal weapons for the Indian cricket team, always pushing himself to the maximum in any condition. He hurt his back on more than one occasion, and as a result, he was ruled out of the ongoing Border-Gavaskar Trophy. However, he is expected to feature in the ICC ODI World Cup later this year.