Venkatesh Prasad: Each of them can win matches on their own
Ex-pacer Venkatesh Prasad backs India's pace trio of Bumrah, Bhuvi and Shami to rock at World Cup
Venkatesh Prasad, the former India swing king, has backed the three-pronged pace attack of Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami and Bhuvneshwar Kumar to come up trumps at the World Cup. Prasad, the bowling coach of the national team between 2007 and 2009, observed: "Their technical expertise in terms of seam presentation, finish and sheer pace is simply outstanding. Each one is capable of winning matches on his own."
Prasad anointed Bumrah as the leader of the troika. "He is among the best in the world — in the Powerplay, mid-innings and towards the end," said Prasad, who had an excellent 1999 World Cup in England embellished by five for 27 against Pakistan in Manchester. "Just look at the maturity with which he bowls. Maturity is about knowing the situation, about the batsman's intentions. He doesn't get predictable because he has so many options. The pace he generates from a short run-up is brilliant. India are very blessed to have someone like Bumrah.
"Both he and Shami should not shy away from using the bouncer because they both can bowl consistently in excess of 140 kmph. Because one new ball is used at each end in 50-over cricket, it is imperative to pitch the ball up early on, around the fourth stump, and try and induce edges. When the ball gets seven-eight overs old, the length should be pulled back just little bit. All three are capable of moving the ball at pace because of the seam position they maintain every ball."
Prasad, however, did sound a note of caution. "I hope they aren't physically or mentally tired because of so much cricket and travel in recent times," he noted. "I also hope neither Bhuvi nor Shami has started to doubt himself because they went for a few towards the end-overs in the IPL. I know the format and the stage are different, but sometimes you start doubting yourself if you are not able to execute your variations. It's just a small doubt, I am confident they have the experience to not let that affect them."
Predicting flat tracks for a majority of the tournament, Prasad said: "That's when it is crucial to keep picking up wickets. I am sure with the attack at his disposal, Virat Kohli can expect his bowlers to restrict oppositions to 270-280, which is well below par in England if the trend over the last few years is any indication. You will have the occasional surface where the ball seams around, but by and large, I anticipate very good pitches for batting."
'Look at the maturity with which he bowls. India are very blessed to have someone like Bumrah'
Prasad on Bumrah
'I also hope neither Bhuvi nor Shami has started to doubt himself because they went for a few towards the end-overs in the IPL' P
rasad on Bhuvneshwar
'Bumrah and Shami should not shy away from using the bouncer because they both can bowl consistently in excess of 140 kmph'
Prasad on Shami
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