Pragyan Ojha has questioned team management’s tactic of sending Jasprit Bumrah as the nightwatchman, stating that Bumrah is a bigger asset with the ball. On the other hand, Deep Dasgupta stated that it was a perfect decision to send Bumrah with the only other option being Ashwin.
With all the debate of who should walk out in the last eight overs of the day’s play left, India sent their openers out against the Australian bowlers under lights. However, Prithvi Shaw’s early dismissal brought about a change in the batting order, with the Indian management sending Jasprit Bumrah as the nightwatchman.
While the move paid off, as Bumrah stayed put at the crease, former Indian left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha questioned the management’s approach of sending the pacer to bat in such conditions. He also asked why the management risked him when the pacer was a bigger asset with the ball in such conditions.
“Bumrah with the ball is a bigger asset than going out there and batting. I would not have sent him (as the nightwatchman). Maybe I would have sent somebody else but not Bumrah because he is your number one bowler,” Ojha said on Sports Today, reported HT.
“I have spoken to fast bowlers, when they tour abroad, they have an extra layer of protection in their shoes to avoid injuries while batting. Those injuries can cost you the series. Because it’s Bumrah and we have another three Tests to go, as a team he is very important for us.”
However, there was a split opinion between Ojha and former Indian wicketkeeper Deep Dasgupta, who believed that it was the right move from the management. With Ravichandran Ashwin also being an option, Dasgupta added that Bumrah was the perfect choice to tackle out the swing in the night under the lights.
“If you’re looking at a defensive technique then I’d pick Bumrah over the others. I would have actually asked Ashwin if he wanted to bat as nightwatchman even though I think he’s a proper batsman. But I’m alright with Bumrah going in,” Dasgupta said.
“I agree with the decision because defensively he is your best option unless you want to send Ashwin. The whole concept of a nightwatchman is to protect the batsman who’s out in there and those who are going to come after that,” he concluded.