Senior England pacer James Anderson has opened up on his heated battle with Jasprit Bumrah, saying that his Indian counterpart was 'not trying to get him out' while bowling 90 mph screamers at him in the first innings of Lord's Test.
Rain saved England in the first Test at Trent Bridge. In the second Test at Lord's, England were in a comfortable position at the end of Day 4 but what happened on the final day will be talked about for a long time now. India lost the wicket of Rishabh Pant early, Mohammed Shami scored a scintillating unbeaten fifty, partnering with Jasprit Bumrah for an unbeaten 89-run stand for the ninth wicket. England were then bundled out for 120 inside the final two sessions of the match to go down by 151 runs.
The course of the match shifted after an over from Bumrah, in which the speedster intimidated Test cricket's most successful pacer with a barrage of short balls on Day 3. James Anderson has now admitted that he was taken aback by the pace and aggression of Bumrah, adding that the 27-year-old was not trying to send him back to the pavilion.
“I got caught off guard a little bit because all the batters coming in were saying how slow the pitch was. Banged in short; it was really slow. When I came out to bat, Joe said Bumrah was not bowling as quick as he normally does.
“And then, the first ball was 90 miles an hour and on the money, wasn’t it? And it felt like, I haven’t felt like this ever in my career. I felt he wasn’t trying to get me out,” James Anderson said while speaking to Tailenders Podcast.
A devastated Anderson was bowled on the final delivery of the day and later, words were exchanged between the two pacers while both the teams were walking off the field.
India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin had later revealed that Bumrah had approached Anderson for reconciliation only to get "brushed aside" by the veteran.
“The thing was, Jimmy [Anderson] was like ‘Hey mate! Why are you bowling so fast? Am I doing the same to you?’"Ashwin had said on his YouTube channel.
“The beauty about that is, looks like Jimmy had told Boom [Bumrah], ‘All these while, you were bowling in the 80 mph, suddenly on seeing me, why are you bowling in the 90 mph?’"
“So after the innings, the boys were walking back to the dressing room," fielding coach R Sridhar added. "Then, Bumrah walked past Jimmy and just patted at him, so as to tell him that it [bouncers] wasn’t intentional. We all know Bumrah. He is such a nice guy. So he had gone to talk to him and end the matter, but Jimmy brushed him aside.”
“Brushing him aside, he had told him “You bowl only 85 mph to the other batters, you are bowling 90 mph to me. This is cheating. I won’t accept,” Sridhar had further added.