Pacer Jasprit Bumrah said he’s eager to get back into cricket for defending champions Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League, after a much-needed break.
“I was on a break. I bowled a lot of overs in South Africa, had played continuously throughout the year. I was at NCA and not sleeping at home. It was a good break and was necessary. The hunger is back and it is good to be back (playing cricket),” Bumrah said ahead of Mumbai’s IPL opener against Chennai Super Kings here on Saturday.
“I have played against CSK before. It’s good to play against India teammates,” said Bumrah who has already scalped 47 wickets in 46 matches for MI in three years in IPL.
Bumrah is now the senior bowler in MI’s pace attack in the absence of Lasith Malinga who has retired as a player, but insisted his team had an-all round bowling unit and was not dependent on any one of them.
“We have a very good bowling unit. We have got varieties — good spinners and fast bowlers,” he said.
Asked about coach Mahela Jayawardene’s comment that he did not know the word pressure, Bumrah said, “I don’t think about expectations and just want to focus on the situation and not about outside.
“A clear mindset and control are very important. Even if you have six varieties, if you are not able to execute on a given day it’s no use,” said the World No. 1 bowler in the shorter formats of the game.
MI’s bowling coach Shane Bond was all praise for Bumrah and said he’s the same humble and hard-working person he was three years ago.
“I watched a little bit of him in South Africa. He is No. 1 in T20s, No. 1 in ODIs and in Test cricket he has been outstanding. He has grown up as a person, he is a senior player now. I met him three years ago for the first time. He is still the same — humble and wants to work hard.
“I think he is a complete bowler. The first thing you talk about him is his yorker. He has also got a good bouncer, moves the ball both way and hits the wicket hard. He has got a very good slower ball and a very good read on the game. The more he plays at the international level he is going to get better and better and is a big asset to Indian cricket,” said the former New Zealand fast bowler who used to clock 150 kph in his prime.
Bond said Bumrah is someone every team would look out to do the job at the back end of the innings.
“He has got the skills to be successful in Test cricket, having watched him a bit in South Africa,” added Bond in praise of Bumrah who got 23 wickets across three formats on the visit to South Africa.
“We have got a number of bowlers to bowl at different times. That is the strength of our bowling unit,” explained Bond in a nutshell about MI’s bowling unit.