12/07/2022
Former India cricketer Saba Karim has backed India pacers Jasprit Bumrah and Harshal Patel - who had a poor outing in the just concluded T20I series against Australia - saying the duo can come good at the right time. Harshal Patel - who made a comeback in the Australia series - was pretty expensive and struggled to find his rhythm.

Harshal Patel – who made a comeback in the Australia series – was pretty expensive and struggled to find his rhythm. Bumrah – who also returned to action – leaked 50 runs in the final T20I held in Hyderabad from his quota of 4 overs and remained wicketless. It was the first occasion in his T20I career when the right-arm pacer from Gujarat – who is known for remaining economical – conceded fifty runs in a match.

Speaking exclusively on SPORTS18’s daily sports news show ‘SPORTS OVER THE TOP’, Karim, a former India selector, said it isn’t easy for a cricketer to find his form immediately after returning from injury.

“That is true, but at times we just tend to get carried away and want pacer bowlers to deliver in a very effective manner in all the T20 formats – it is not going to happen. The entire format is based so much on unpredictability. So, in one game you may have a very good outing, second game some of the batters may get after you. What is more important is that a particular bowler is supposed to have faith in his skill and abilities. So, one can see that in Jasprit Bumrah. I can understand that he’s coming back after a long layoff and may take some time to settle down but let’s not get carried away, Jasprit Bumrah in all the games that he will play will be extremely effective – so that may not happen. Having said that, I do believe Jasprit Bumrah, the kind of bowling combination they have right now, and Harshal Patel also, both of them can come good at the right time for India,” said Karim.

Karim also claimed that young pacer Arshdeep Singh should get a chance in the India-South Africa series before the upcoming World Cup. “Yes, I think it’s very important for India to settle on their bowling unit. I am keener to see Arshdeep Singh because now with Jasprit Bumrah back in the eleven and Axar Patel bowling quite well in the powerplay, there is an option of getting an Arshdeep and keeping him only either for the middle or for the end overs – that is a strong possibility. Going forward for the World Cup – you need a pace bowler whom one can rely on to deliver on all the games in the death overs,” said Karim.

Speaking about senior wicketkeeper-batter Dinesh Karthik getting a preference over Rishabh Pant at number six. “Well, there is always a possibility, but I think the Indian team management has decided to go ahead with Dinesh Karthik which is not a bad move. They feel that they need more of his kind of a player at number six who can do the finisher’s role in a much better manner because Rishabh Pant in that kind of particular role has not been tried before and places above that have kind of been sorted. So, I do have my doubts that Rishabh Pant will get a look in because the Indian team has kind of found the right combination,” Karim added further.