After a spell of 2/40 on day 1, Mohammed Siraj has credited his success on day 1 to the confidence that he got from regularly conversing with Jasprit Bumrah and Ajinkya Rahane. Furthermore, he also revealed that his hands were itching to get the ball after Bumrah and Yadav opened the bowling.
With an unfortunate injury to Mohammed Shami, the Indian fast-bowling hopes were slightly dashed going into the second Test at the iconic MCG. However, the unfortunate injury came at an opportune time for the management to hand a debut to one of first-class’ regular performers Mohammed Siraj. The Hyderabad bowler had created ripples on the domestic scene before getting his Test cap for the national team.
While the daunting crowd were reduced to a paltry number, the venue and the backdrop of the test would have created a feeling of nervousness for any debutant. But luckily for Siraj, his constant chat with both skipper Ajinkya Rahane and senior pace bowler Jasprit Bumrah gave him a lot of confidence and eased his nerves. Alongside that, he admitted that his connection with fielding coach Sridhar gave him a lot of boost going into the Test match.
“When I got the cap, I felt it was the biggest achievement of my life. I gained a lot of confidence speaking with Ajju bhai (Ajinkya Rahane) and Jassi bhai (Jasprit Bumrah),” he told R Sridhar in a conversation on BCCI.tv
“My hands were itching to bowl out there, and after lunch when Ajju bhai told me to bowl, I began warming up. Then he said to me ‘you’ll only bowl for two overs’. Jadeja was to be brought on and rightly so because there was moisture on the wicket and it was helpful for the spinners,” he added.
During his spell after lunch, the right-arm seamer setup the prodigal talent Cameron Green in scintillating fashion. After bowling in-swingers to him early on, Siraj shook things up by beating him constantly outside the off-stump before darting an in-swinger to catch him off-guard.
“I was trying to come close to the wickets as well as go wide of it. In swing comes naturally to me. To Cameron Green, my away swingers were landing well too. After bowling a few inswingers and I bowled two complete overs of outswing. Then I bowled one ball which was the inswinger which got him. It felt nice to set him up and get his wicket.”
Siraj also revealed that he is quite comfortable with the ‘Australian’ way of catching, pointing his fingers towards the sky before he caught Mitchell Starc.
“I was confident in catching the ball with the fingers pointing towards the sky. It is something that I have done my whole life, so that’s why I went in with that,” he concluded.