India skipper Rohit Sharma and head coach Rahul Dravid said it was disappointing not to carry Bumrah to Australia but hoped that some other bowler will stand up and make himself count on the big occasion.
“Lot of the guys haven’t been to Australia, which is why we wanted to go early. Play on some bouncy pitches in Perth and see what we can do there. Out of the 15, only 7-8 have been there before, so wanted to make an effort to go there early.
“We’ve organised a couple of practice games. Bumrah is a big miss, but there are a few guys in the reckoning. We’ll make the call once we reach Australia,” said Rohit.
Dravid too stressed on the same point. “Bumrah’s absence is a big loss, he’s been a great player but it happens, it’s an opportunity for someone else to stand up. We’ll miss him, his personality around the group,” said Dravid in the post-match press conference.
“Good to get the right results in both the series. In this format, you need luck, things to go your way, especially in close games.
We didn’t have that in the Asia Cup, but had some luck during the Australia series. We were able to rotate the squad a bit, pleased with how it’s gone overall,” said Dravid.
India had a forgettable outing in the previous edition of the ICC T20 World Cup in UAE as they failed to even make it to the semifinal, and now with a new captain and head coach the team will go with a different approach.
“We made a decision after the last T20 WC, sat down with Rohit, made a conscious effort to be positive. We have the batsmanship to play positively, we had to structure our squad with batting depth. Pleased with the way we’ve come along,” said Dravid.
The BCCI has not yet named a replacement for Bumrah, although seamers Mohammed Shami and Deepak Chahar are among the standby players.
“In terms of who the replacement for Bumrah would be, we will have a look, we have time till October 15 so Shami is obviously someone who is in the standbys. But obviously, he could not play this series for us, which would have been ideal.
“But he is at the NCA at the moment, we have to get reports on how he is recovering and what’s his status after 14-15 days of COVID is,” said Dravid.
“We will take a call. Once we get his report, we and the selectors can take the call on how we move forward on it. What do we expect from the guy?
“We just want him to play some good cricket, have fun and enjoy himself and do the best he can. It is all we can ask from people, do the best you can,” he further added.
The Indian bowlers conceded over 200 runs in both the second and third T20I against South Africa raising concerns over India’s bowling.
“Obviously, you keep trying to get better in all the departments of the game. Certainly, bowling at the death, to be fair, the wickets have been really flat and it has not been easy to bowl at the death, not just for our team but the other team as well.
“Australia and South Africa are the two sides with a lot of experience in their bowling lineup but they have struggled at the death as well,” said Dravid.
“It is just not us, but yeah sure we have to look at ourselves. We need to see how we can improve and get better, this is one area where we would certainly want to improve because we know, as you play these big tournaments, margins can be really small and every run or boundary can matter,” said India head coach.