‘World’s best bowler bowling one over…’: Brett Lee, Steve Smith tear into Hardik Pandya’s strange Bumrah tactics vs SRH | Cricket

Australian cricket stars Brett Lee and Steve Smith were left scratching their heads at Mumbai Indians skipper Hardik Pandya’s tactics in an IPL 2024 match against the Sunrisers Hyderabad in Hyderabad on Wednesday. Pandya introduced Jasprit Bumrah as a first-change bowler after opting to field first but mysteriously, he took his ace bowler off after bowling just one over. Bumrah gave away only five runs in his first over but didn’t bowl another one in the powerplay despite Travis Head and Abhishek Sharma smacking the MI bowlers to all parts of the ground, scoring their highest powerplay total (81) ever.

Hardik Bumrah and Jasprit Bumrah
Hardik Bumrah and Jasprit Bumrah

That was not it. Pandya delayed Bumrah‘s second spell by as much as the 13th over of the SRH innings. By that time, Abhishek and Head had created havoc, by becoming the first pair to notch up half-centuries in less than 20 balls in IPL. SRH’s score was 173/3 in 12 overs when Bumrah was brought back into the attack. On most days, that is a respectable T20 total.

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Brett Lee said MI got their bowling attack totally wrong. “I think Mumbai Indians got their bowling wrong… Jasprit Bumrah should have bowled the first over. In the last two games when Jasprit Bumrah has come onto bowl, they’ve been none for 42 and today, they were none for 42 again when he came onto bowl. The game is already set up. Put that aside, Klaasen was pure class tonight, didn’t matter who was bowling, you were going to get crunched,” Lee told Jio Cinema.

Bumrah was the second-most economical bowler in the match, after SRH captain Pat Cummins (2/35), conceding 36 runs in his four overs which did not yield any wickets.

Smith perplexed at Hardik’s captaincy

Smith said he was perplexed with Hardik’s captaincy, especially regarding the usage of Bumrah.

“I was perplexed with some of their bowling changes in the first innings for Mumbai. Bumrah bowled in the fourth over, he went for 5 and then we didn’t see him again till the 13th over when they were on 173,” Smith told ‘Star Sports’.

“All the damage had been done, you needed your best bowler to be coming back and take some wickets in that period and I think they missed a trick there bringing him back only in the 13th over,” he pointed out.

“I think he got a few things wrong, and that was the main one for me. I mean you can’t have one of the best bowlers in the world bowling one over.”Smith said Bumrah’s late reintroduction into the attack rendered him ineffective.

“When the ball is going around like that, you’ve just got to bring your best bowler back earlier than you would have liked. It’s just about adapting on the go and I’d have almost bowled Bumrah out by the 15th, 16th over, try to get some wickets, if he gets wickets, you slow the rate down anyway.

“If the guy is batting at the end, doesn’t matter who is bowling, we saw that really with Bumrah in the last two overs and he still got smacked with the bat at the back end,” he explained.

“So if he came back earlier and had taken some risks, things would have been really different and they got 277 and they could have been reduced to 240 and might have chased those down, so I was just perplexed that he bowled only one over up until the 13th over.”


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