Jasprit Bumrah bagged 2 wickets in 2nd T20I vs Sri Lanka at Ranchi © Getty Images (File photo)
Jasprit Bumrah bagged 2 wickets in 2nd T20I vs Sri Lanka at Ranchi © Getty Images (File photo)

It was an easy win for India against Sri Lanka at Ranchi, a stadium where the hosts are yet to lose a game. The series is levelled 1-1 and India’s 69-run win was a result of a complete team performance. The batsmen, led by Shikhar Dhawan, posted 196, far too many for the inexperienced Sri Lankan side; and the bowlers sealed it comfortably. Local boy and Indian skipper MS Dhoni threw in a few surprises when he sent Hardik Pandya to bat ahead of him and Yuvraj Singh; and that was not it. Jasprit Bumrah, who usually bowls with the new ball, was brought on to bowl in the 16th over. FULL SCORECARD: India vs Sri Lanka, 2nd T20I at Ranchi

By then the damage was done, but Bumrah once again showed how good a bowler he is at death. He finished with figures of 3-0-17-2. He is not even a month old in international cricket, but the maturity he has shown should serve a lesson to many of the fast bowlers who have been in the fray for a long time but have showed little consistency. A month and half back, the 22-year-old ran through the strong Delhi batting line-up in the Vijay Hazare Trophy final to help Gujarat win the tournament. He claimed figures of 5 for 28 and little did one know that a few weeks later he will already be one of India’s key players ahead of the ICC World T20 2016.

Indian cricket followers have watched him bowl during IPL. The first thing one notices is his unorthodox action. He can bowl quick but his action makes one feel that he is even faster, and it takes time for a batsman to get accustomed to it. Batsmen are bound to take time to figure out his release. At the highest level, coaches try and tamper with originality but by his own admission Bumrah was asked to be himself by his seniors and coaches, and all they asked him was to go out and express like he did in the domestic season. That helped. Bowlers with unorthodox style have indeed been successful and topping the list will be his Mumbai Indians teammate Lasith Malinga. READ: Shikhar Dhawan finally finds his groove in T20Is

Bumrah made a mark in the very first game he played in national colours. In the final ODI against Australia at SCG, he announced himself with figures of 2 for 40 from 10 overs, a game which saw an average run-rate of over six and half. Since then, he has played 5 T20Is, picked 8 wickets at 17.37 and considering he bowls in Powerplay and death overs, his economy rate of 7.51 is exemplary.

On Friday, he fired in a couple of quality yorkers that would have tested the very best in the world. And that is something he has done consistently. Barring Zaheer Khan at his peak, Indian bowlers have not used that delivery to great effect in the past decade, and it is a treat to watch a new breed in Bumrah emerging.

Dhoni termed Bumrah as the ‘find of the Australian tour’. Shane Watson called him ‘a great find.’ Even the experienced Ashish Nehra, who is now his new ball partner and made his India debut when Bumrah was five, praised him by saying, “It is not easy for a young bowler like him to land in the country and play two days later.”

Bumrah has been quick to admit that it was from Malinga that he learned to develop yorker as a potent weapon. The Sri Lankan great even taught him to bowl the slower yorker. IPL has given Indian cricketers a wonderful learning platform and the likes of Bumrah have surely benefitted. But you can have all the great coaches and mentors but onus is on you to go out and execute those. Bumrah has shown maturity in that department. It is not just his skills that make him a threat; rather it is his ability to know when to bowl what makes him special. He is a thinking bowler, who is always trying to dig deep into a batsman’s mind and trying to outsmart him.

Bumrah can be one of the most potent death bowlers and in fact at any stage. At this rate, a Test spot too is not far away. However, it is too early to discuss now.

With Mohammed Shami fit, the experienced Nehra back at his best and Bumrah beginning a dream run, Team India have some happy selection worries in their fast men ahead of the Asia Cup T20 and ICC World T20.

(Suvajit Mustafi consumes cricket for lunch, fiction for dinner and munches numerous other snacks throughout the day. Yes, a jack of several trades, all Suvajit dreamt of was being India’s World Cup winning skipper but ended up being a sports writer, author, screenwriter, director, copywriter, graphic designer, sports marketer, strategist, entrepreneur,  philosopher and traveller. Donning so many hats, it’s cricket which gives him the ultimate high and where he finds solace. He can be followed at @RibsGully and rivu7)