Irrespective of what Mohammad Shami does in the second match he has without a doubt given the team management some serious headache with his performances since his return. In the first match what would have been a welcome and slightly unexpected sight for the team management and viewers alike were the bowling figures of the two frontline bowlers for the match.
After the first 8 overs India was able to stifle the Aussies to an extent but what stood out was Shami’s spell of 4 overs for just 6 runs. A remarkable output during a spell where he visibly looked like the better bowler of the two. And the icing on the cake? The other bowler that we are talking about is arguably one of the best ODI bowlers going around right now. Shami came back in the second spell as well and at a crucial juncture knocked off both Maxwell and Turner which prevented Australia from really kicking on and scoring a bigger total.
In the process, Shami also became the fastest Indian to reach 100 wickets and it was all a well deserved and just reward for his efforts because if we just take a step back and look at the last couple of series, Shami has been India’s most consistent and successful bowler with much better figures than most.
Although it is pretty good news for the Indian team, what it also does is it creates a headache when they sit down and try to decide the combination for the Eleven. In all probability India would go in with a 2 Pacer 2 spinner plus an all-rounder combination. One of the pacers is going to be Bumrah and the second place will need a lot of thinking because Bhuvaneshwar Kumar has himself been very successful and both him and Bumrah have formed a potent combination. What also works for Bhuvaneshwar is his ability to bat a bit which comes in very handy at the time of crisis.
But then on the other hand you have Shami who is on a tear right now and grabbing wickets by a handful in every match. Do they go for the wicket taking ability of Shami or the additional batting depth of Bhuvaneshwar Kumar. It would be a very interesting debate but more importantly it shows how well-prepared India is for the World Cup.