In Jasprit Bumrah, India have a diamond in their armoury: Viv Richards
Jasprit Bumrah (AFP Photo)

Jasprit Bumrah has been one of the finds of the recent times, a bowler who has added a different dimension to India‘s attack across formats. Be his unorthodox action or pinpoint yorkers, the young pacer has troubled batsmen everywhere and left quite an impact.

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So much so that legendary West Indies batsman Viv Richards says if given a choice, he would choose to take guard against Dennis Lillee and not Bumrah.

And why is that? Richards explains, “I would prefer to face Dennis Lillee rather than Bumrah because he doesn’t have a perfect action,” Richards told the Economic Times. “With Lillee you can see what he is doing, but not with Bumrah. In Bumrah, India have a diamond in their armoury. As long as he remains fit, he is going to trouble a lot of batsmen for a long time to come.”

Throwing more light on what makes Bumrah a difficult challenge, Richards said, “As a batsman, I like to have a guy (bowl at me) who is quick, has real substance in pace, and I would like to use that rhythm when playing a bowler. It gives me enough time to put things into focus. Bumrah has an advantage because of his action. He looks like a spinner running in (laughs), but then he extracts that pace of any quick bowling anywhere in the world. And that is uncomfortable for most batsmen to face because you need time to adjust and he doesn’t give you enough time.”

Richards, who played 121 Tests and 187 ODIs scoring over 15000 international runs in them, feels the action gives him a ‘huge advantage’.

“Batsmen sometimes get themselves into uncomfortable position against Bumrah and do not have time or rhythm to work with. It is because he is so unorthodox. It’s unusual that both his hands go up at the same time. If he were an English bowler, they would have told him, “You have got to bowl like this or be like that”. But to me, his unorthodoxy is a huge advantage,” he observed.

Bumrah’s unique action may be a huge advantage but experts have also raised concerns over his durability saying it could result in a major injury.