Jasprit Bumrah has risen rapidly to become one of the leading fast bowlers in the world but he says many thought that he would be the “last person to play for India” given his unusual bowling action.
The Indian pacer made this revelation during a live session on Instagram with former India batsman Yuvraj Singh.
“Many people told me that I won’t play for long, there was an expectation that the last person to play for the country would be me,” said Bumrah when Yuvraj asked him about his high-arm bowling action.
“They told me that I would just play one or two Ranji Trophy games, that it (the action) is difficult for the body. But I kept on improving and I persisted with my action,” said the 26-year-old, who made his India debut in January 2016 following his exploits in the IPL.
Bumrah, without taking names, also revealed the inspiration behind his action.
“I have not taken special coaching and whatever I have learnt is from seeing the TV. I used to replicate the action of a tennis ball bowler.
“I don’t know when this action was developed. Till under-19, I had a different action. That used to change, but when this action got developed, then nobody allowed me to change it and I worked on it,” he said.
Bumrah has gone on to play 64 ODIs, 50 T20s and 14 Tests for the country since breaking into the side.
He made his Test debut in January 2018 and in quick time, became Virat Kohli’s go to bowler even in the five-day format.
“…I value Test cricket as we have to work hard for every wicket and it’s satisfying. Every Test is important for me, even though I haven’t played (a Test) in India, I’m waiting (for it),” he said.
During the chat, Yuvraj reminded Bumrah that he had predicted that the pacer would go on to become the “number one bowler in the world”.
And he did in 2017 when he reached the top spot in the T20 rankings.