Siraj replaces injured Bumrah for SA series

Published October 1, 2022
<p>Muhammad Siraj to replace Jasprit Bhumrah in India-SA series. — AFP/File</p>

Muhammad Siraj to replace Jasprit Bhumrah in India-SA series. — AFP/File

NEW DELHI: India brought in Mohammed Siraj on Friday for the remaining Twenty20 matches against South Africa to replace pace spearhead Jasprit Bumrah, whose World Cup is in severe doubt because of a back injury.

Bumrah missed Wednesday’s opening win over the Proteas and he is under the supervision of a medical team, the Board of Control for Cricket in India said.

The 28-year-old, whose unorthodox action and yorkers make him a valuable limited-overs asset, missed the recent Asia Cup with the injury.

He played two 20-overs home matches against Australia earlier this month but skipped Wednesday’s Twenty20 against South Africa after the injury flared up.

Local media quoted Indian board (BCCI) sources as saying Bumrah had now been ruled out of the World Cup, where 2007 champions India begin their campaign on Oct. 23 against arch-rivals Pakistan in Melbourne.

Bumrah has a stress fracture of the back, Indian media said, calling his withdrawal from the tournament in Australia a certainty.

But BCCI spokespersons declined to confirm if Bumrah had been ruled out of the World Cup, with secretary Jay Shah saying only that the bowler would miss the entire South Africa series.

Bumrah has played 30 Tests, 72 ODIs and 60 T20Is for India since making his international debut in January 2016.

India beat world champions Australia 2-1 earlier this month and are 1-0 up against South Africa in their three-match series.

However, their death-overs bowling has been a concern ahead of the World Cup. With Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Arshdeep Singh bleeding runs in the final overs India had hoped Bumrah’s return from injury would plug that hole.

Rohit Sharma’s team are also fretting over the fitness of batsman Deepak Hooda, who has been ruled out of the South Africa series with a back injury.—Agencies

Published in Dawn, October 1st, 2022

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