Andy Bichel: Mohammed Shami has surprised me with his ability to keep going, bowling at 140kmph
Former Australian all-rounder Andy Bichel says India's success in World Cup depends a lot on keeping pace trio of Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Mohammed Shami injury-free
Former Australia all-rounder and 2003 World Cup-winning member, Andy Bichel heaped praise on India's pace trio of Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami and Bhuvneshwar Kumar, but with a word of caution.
However, Bichel said the Indian team management will face a tough task to keep their pace trio injury-free during the forthcoming World Cup. "India have got a beautiful attack. Bhuvi, Bumrah and Shami are three world-class bowlers, especially Bumrah," said Bichel.
"The question is, can Bumrah maintain his sensational [IPL] form? He has to be rested at some point before the big dance on July 14 [World Cup final]. Bhuvi is priceless in these [English] conditions, swinging the ball both ways. Shami is someone who has really surprised me with his ability to keep going, bowling at 140kmph. It's going to be crucial to keep them together and ensure that they are fit enough on the day of the final," Bichel said on the sidelines of a promotional event here yesterday.
Bichel, who's best ODI figures of 7-20 came in the 2003 World Cup match against England at Port Elizabeth, felt Virat Kohli's ability to stay till the end of a chase is crucial for Team India's success. "The experience of MS [Dhoni] at the back end has helped Kohli and the Indian skipper has brought that into his game. Taking nothing away from Sachin [Tendulkar] when I look back, Kohli has changed the mindset and fulfilled the role of being a finisher and being there in the end during big chases," said Bichel.
Talking about Australia's chances in the World Cup, Bichel said good scores from Steven Smith and David Warner would be the key for the team to defend their title. "It's an interesting balance, after Smith or Warner get a hundred, everyone will be breathing a little easy. Australia have got an easy start against Afghanistan. Hopefully, they can get some runs there," he said.
"Australia have had a good time against Pakistan without Warner and Smith, but with them coming back, there is so much energy in the group which is exciting for the team. "They have to harness the energy well by dishing out performances," Bichel concluded.
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