File photo of Jasprit Bumrah© AFP
The Asia Cup 2022 got underway on Saturday and it was Afghanistan who emerged triumphant against Sri Lanka in the Group B clash. But all eyes would be on contest between India and Pakistan in Group A on Sunday at the Dubai International Stadium. Both India and Pakistan are without their star pacers — Jasprit Bumrah and Shaheen Shah Afridi. Former India spinner Harbhajan Singh has said that India will miss Bumrah and him not being a part of the lineup will be a respite for other teams.
“Jasprit Bumrah is an extra-ordinary bowler. If you see his performances over the past two years, he has had quite an impact. This year he also became the captain. So him being not there is a respite for the other teams. He is a bowler who can turn the tide of the game,” said Harbhajan in a video uploaded on Sports Tak.
“Mohammed Shami and Harshal Patel are also not there. So the bowling of the Indian team looks slightly weak to me. But India has better spinners. Yuzvendra Chahal and Ravichandran Ashwin have a lot of experience, they can help the team win,” he added.
Former Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi also weighed in on the absence of Shaheen Shah Afridi and he was critical of the management for not giving the ace speedster enough rest.
“Shaheen Shah Afridi is my junior. I keep giving him advice. He is quite aggressive and he gives his everything. In PSL, he used to dive a lot, then also I used to give him advice that do not dive as you are a fast bowler. You can get injured, but later I realised he is also an Afridi, he did not listen to me,” said Shahid Afridi.
“He is undergoing treatment, I just hope he gets fine in the next 1-2 months. We all want him to be there for the World Cup, he should not miss that tournament. You are right, you should not make him play cricket continuosly. Fast bowlers don’t have a long shelf life. Our bench strength should be strong and it is strong. You should keep rotating bowlers and give everyone a proper rest,” he added.
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