Cricket-India need to manage Bumrah smartly, says skipper Rohit

cricket-india need to manage bumrah smartly, says skipper rohit

FILE PHOTO: Cricket - First Test - India v England - India Press Conference - Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium, Hyderabad, India - January 24, 2024 India's Rohit Sharma during the press conference REUTERS/Francis Mascarenhas/File Photo

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (Reuters) - Jasprit Bumrah demonstrated yet again how crucial he is to India's fortunes in the T20 World Cup on Thursday, and captain Rohit Sharma said he will need to manage his pace spearhead smartly to get the best out of him.

Bumrah conceded only seven runs in his four overs and claimed three wickets to help India begin their Super Eight stage campaign with a resounding victory over Afghanistan.

Bumrah struck twice in the powerplay overs to effectively derail Afghanistan's chase after India had posted 181-8 at the Kensington Oval.

The wickets included Afghanistan's leading scorer in the tournament Rahmanullah Gurbaz, deceiving the opener with a change of pace.

The seamer with a slingy action then returned to remove Najibullah Zadran and effectively seal the match in India's favour.

"We know Bumrah's class and what he can do," Rohit said as his team remained unbeaten in the tournament.

"It is important for us to use him smartly.

"He is the one who is ready to take the responsibility (of leading the attack)."

India dropped seamer Mohammed Siraj and picked Kuldeep Yadav in a three-pronged spin attack.

Rohit said the 2007 champions, who face Bangladesh in their next Group I match on Saturday, would be flexible with their bowling combinations.

"We have to assess conditions, opposition and based on that we're open to making changes if required," he said.

"We felt three spinners were good here. If it's seamer-friendly next time, we'll go with (three) seamers."

His counterpart Rashid Khan said Afghanistan should be prepared to chase such bigger scores in the Super Eight stage.

"That was a surface we thought we could chase 170-180," the all-rounder said.

"Against bigger teams, we should be thinking we will have to chase such scores."

(Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in New Delhi; Editing by Hugh Lawson)

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