There have been many cricket experts, legendary cricketers and pundits, who believed that the Gujarat lad Jasprit Bumrah is going to be India’s biggest asset after seeing his slinging action, which was seen and discussed for the first time in his debut game between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Mumbai Indians, on April 4, 2013, when he was just 19-years-old. And now Bumrah have become India’s biggest asset and a household name in limited overs cricket in less than 3 years.
When asked whether he expected to reach these heights in such a short span of time? Bumrah told The Financial Express, “‘arey nahi Aisa nahi hai’. I don’t think I have reached any heights in my career so far. For me, there are a lot of the things to be learnt and there is a long way to go. But, yeah definitely the start has been really good. The pressure is always there when you play for India but my focus was on the current moment and I wasn’t thinking too much. I knew the ground was big and the wicket was slow.”
As the 23-year-old Indian fast bowler already have played under the captaincy of Indian skipper Virat Kohli and Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit Sharma in the Indian Premier league and he doesn't feel any inequality in their approach.
When asked about how Rohit is different from Kohli as a captain, Bumrah said, “I have played just one series in Virat’s captaincy so it’s hard to comment but both Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli are quite similar in their approach. They both urge you to be your own captain, ask you to set your own field, have a plan for each batsman and they always back what you believe in.”
The talented Bumrah said that the Indian Premier League has played a significant role in his career thus far as he started playing in the league even before making his first-class debut.
He added on this, “IPL has been very important in my career but it’s not just IPL that gives you an identity. It is played for just two months and rest of the year you have to play in domestic tournaments and have to prove yourself. Since I started playing IPL before first-class cricket, I got an opportunity to share the dressing room with so many legends. By observing them, I learnt how to prepare for the match. On the other hand, domestic cricket helped me understand my own game.”
There are many cricket pundits, who have been compared him with legendary Sri Lankan fast bowler Lasith Malinga because of his slinging action. Bumrah explains how Maling has helped him grow as a player, “I came to IPL in 2013 at a very young age. I had just started playing Under-19 but still, Malinga approached me himself. He told me that you have a different action so I’ll help you. That was very important for me and I stay in touch with and keep taking his inputs.”
Jasprit added that he is very happy with the inclusion of Australian fast-bowler Mitchell Johnson in the Mumbai side for the 10th season of IPL which means the team now has four quality overseas fast-bowlers names Tim Southee, Lasith Malinga, Mitchell Johnson and Mitchell McClenaghan.
He also said he have learnt a lot from Mitch as well Wasim Akram and Brett Lee through watching their videos and he is keen to share the MI dressing room with an Aussie legend.
Bumrah added, “I’m not sure about the combination but I am really happy that Mitchell Johnson is back in the team. He was a part of the MI side when I started playing IPL but left for Kings XI Punjab. I have grown up watching him play and have always admired his bowling. As a teenager, I used to watch a lot of videos of Mitchell Johnson and also of Wasim Akram and Brett Lee. I have learnt a lot from Johnson and shared a good relationship with him too.”
Bumrah is really excited to work with the Sri Lankan legend Mahela Jayawardene, who is the new coach of the Mumbai Indian team. He concluded, “We have heard a lot of good things about Mahela Jayawardene. Even Malinga talks of him quite highly and rates him very highly. So, hopefully, we’ll have a great time under him.”