After India registered a thumping seven-wicket victory against New Zealand in the second T20I on Friday in Ranchi, Robin Uthappa has stated that Harshal Patel can become Jasprit Bumrah’s death-bowling partner in the near future. Harshal was adjudged Man of the Match for his figures of 2/25.
India claimed a resounding series victory against New Zealand in the three-match T20I series after thrashing the visitors by seven wickets on Friday in Ranchi. After winning the toss, India opted to bowl first, and restricted the Black Caps to 153/6. For India, spinner Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel helped their side to restrict the run flow in the middle overs, and scalped one wicket each. Whereas, Harshal Patel displayed a brilliant bowling performance on his Team India debut against New Zealand, and ended up with figures of 2/25 in his four overs in the match.
The fast bowler, who was adjudged Man of the Match in the second T20I started off his international debut with the wicket of dangerous Dary Mitchell (31) in his second over. Harshal, who was brought back to the attack in death overs, scalped the crucial wicket of Glenn Philipps in his third over of the game. Further, Rohit Sharma assigned the pacer to bowl the 19th over of the innings, and he conceded only six runs against the New Zealand batsmen.
"If you consider a death-overs spot, he would definitely be up there for me along with Bumrah, because the kind of skills he possesses and the way he executes those skills under pressure, was incredible -- especially in his second-last over where he conceded a six against Glenn Phillips, then bowled a no-ball in the second and the way he came back from there (dismissing Philipps on the next ball),” said Uthappa on ESPNCricinfo.
New Zealand’s former captain, Daniel Vettori backed Uthappa’s statements, and reckoned that India could become a ‘formidable team’ if Harshal and Bumrah handles the death overs for the Men in Blue.
"If Harshal Patel has that skill set, and we obviously know that Bumrah does, it sets a whole new dynamic to how you prepare your T20 setup. Your first six can be more and more attacking, you can see the likes of Avesh Khan coming as he can be a specialist at the top because you know you got those overs blocked away at the back (death).
"There are not many bowlers who can do it (bowl at the death). If India have two, it sets them up as a formidable team,” said Vettori.
India will face New Zealand in the final T20I on Sunday, November 21 in Kolkata.