In what could be a huge blow to India’s hopes of performing well at the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup in Australia, Prime Minister Jasprit Bumrah will be banned from the tournament with a back stress fracture, PTI news agency reported citing BCCI sources. While an official confirmation is awaited from India’s Board of Control of Cricket, the signs were not great when Bumrah withdrew from India’s opening match against South Africa in Thiruvananthapuram on Wednesday.
BCCI had informed about Bumrah’s injury just minutes before the toss took place at Greenfield Stadium. “Jasprit Bumrah complained of back pain during the practice session in India on Tuesday. BCCI’s medical team assessed him. He has been excluded from the first T20I,” BCCI had tweeted.
— BCCI (@BCCI) September 28, 2022
Bumrah, who had also missed the Asian Cup due to his back problems and was training at the National Cricket Academy, played the last two T20Is against Australia.
“Bumrah will definitely not play in the World T20. He has a serious back condition. It’s a stress fracture and he could be out for six months,” a senior BCCI official told PTI under conditions of anonymity.
India has Mohammed Shami and Deepak Chahar on the standby list for the T20 World Cup and one of them could now be included in the main squad.
Chahar showed the game against South Africa well and was able to give Shami an advantage due to his superior striking ability.
Death bowling in India has been a problem and captain Rohit Sharma himself has pointed it out. Veteran paceman Bhuvneshwar Kumar is under the pump for his poor performance and the pressure to deliver will fall on young Arshdeep Singh and Harshal Patel in the absence of Bumrah.
Bumrah, who played the second and third T20 against Australia, did not travel with the team to Thiruvananthapuram for the series opener against South Africa.
The 28-year-old fast bowler is the second senior star player to be banned after Ravindra Jadeja, who is recovering from knee surgery.
The Indian team is already looking troubled and Bumrah’s injury has only exacerbated the misery for skipper Rohit Sharma and coach Rahul Dravid.
“The loss of Bumrah and Jadeja will be huge for India. We didn’t expect things to turn out the way they did. He was equipped for the Asian Cup precisely to manage his workload management. Now it remains to be seen whether he even fit enough to play the Australia series,” the senior official said.
Many older players have been given adequate rest, taking into account their workload.
What’s more interesting is the fact that in 2022 Bumrah has only played five Tests, five ODIs and as many T20Is, not counting IPL games for Mumbai Indians.
“That’s not a lot of cricket as he was equipped for the Asian Cup, the West Indies tour and also some of the bilateral cricket that was played in India. That’s a lot of rest.” As of now, he is with the NCA and the rehabilitation will be long and difficult. Yes, World T20 is important, but he is still young and India’s greatest bowler. You can’t take any chances with him,” the official said.
Back stress fractures do not require surgery, but a lot of time to heal.
Bumrah, who has a pendulum motion, puts a lot of pressure on his back while loading. Former West Indian pace bowling great Michael Holding had determined that Bumrah was always a candidate for back injuries.
(with PTI inputs)