Mohammed Shami (L) and Jasprit Bumrah (Getty Images)
KOLKATA: Former England off spinner Graeme Swann on Wednesday rated the Jasprit Bumrah-led Indian bowling as the one which has the ability to bowl out any side cheaply.
The cricketer-turned-commentator was in the West Indies in September last year when Indian pace trio of Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma and Mohammed Shami blew away the hosts, sharing 33 out of the possible 40 wickets among them en route to a 2-0 whitewash in the two-Test series.
“I thought it was incredible and I said at the time, this Indian team right now would bowl out any team in the world cheaply with this bowling attack. The way they’re bowling right now, and I stand by that it’s incredible,” Swann said in a chat show on Sony Ten’s Pit Stop.
West Indies lost both the Tests heavily but have now defeated England by four wickets in the Southampton Test when cricket resumed for the first time post the COVID-19 outbreak.
Swann said England probably did not watch that series and blunted their pace attack by a wrong selection of team and dropped Stuart Broad who is capable of doing the ‘donkey’s work’ by complimenting James Anderson.
“England were playing the Ashes, they wouldn’t have watched it. We were there and that was an Indian team, an Indian bowling attack in unbelievable form. Jasprit Bumrah was in incredible form in that series.”
“I think England underestimated the West Indies, even subconsciously, and they picked the wrong team. England got their team selection wrong by dropping Stuart Broad. I will keep banging on about this. England blunted their whole bowling attack by not playing Stuart Broad,” he said.
Swann lauded Broad for doing the hard yards for years now.
“I think he will forgive me for this, I’m not calling Stuart Broad a donkey, but remember, there is such a thing called donkey’s work in a Test match.
“A fast bowler who can bowl 25 overs a day on the sport, never bowl a bad ball, day in day out, same pace — that is Stuart Broad. He is the foil for James Anderson.”
England picked two out and out pacers Jofra Archer and Mark Wood and Swann said they ended up doing the “donkey’s work”.
“If you want to know how to beat anybody as an England team, you pick Stuart Broad and James Anderson, together. While they are still working, still walking, pick them together for goodness sake.”
England skipper Joe Root who missed the first Test due to the birth of his second child, is set to return for the second Test beginning Thursday.
“That will strengthen the team, obviously. Yeah but then again, he’s in the same boat and has not played cricket for a long time. I think there is massive pressure now.
“They want to pick Stuart Broad now. That puts a lot of pressure on Stuart as well. He normally responds to pressure well. I don’t worry about Stuart,” he said.