Despite England recovering well to post 246 runs in the first innings of the fourth Test against India at Southampton, the day belonged to the Indian bowlers, who reduced England to 86/6 at one point.
Mohammad Shami, R Ashwin, and Ishant Sharma picked two wickets each, but the hero of the Indian bowling attack proved to be Jasprit Bumrah who dismissed Keaton Jennings, Jonny Bairstow, and Stuart Broad.
Bumrah bowled at hostile pace and his inswinging delivery to left-handed Keaton Jennings, which had him LBW, was a beauty of the best quality. Jennings shouldered the ball and the ball jagged back in to hit him on the knee in front of the stumps.
“That’s a delivery that Bumrah has developed in the last one week. It’s unbelievable that he could do that. I never saw him bowling that delivery in the Nottingham Test and before that,” England legend Sir Ian Botham said while speaking to the Times of India.
West Indies legend Michael Holding has been critical of Bumrah for not having variations in his bowling was perplexed that a batsman was not able to read the seam position from Bumrah. Holding said, “Is it possible for the batsman to read the seam position when the bowler is steaming in at that pace?”
However, their comments have not gone down with Indian cricketer Harbhajan Singh, who is doing commentary for the England-India Test series.
Harbhajan ridiculed both Botham and Holding by reminding them of a similar delivery bowled by Bumrah to remove Chris Gayle in the semifinals of the World T20 in 2016. Harbhajan said, “You guys have a very poor cricket memory. Go and take a look at the delivery with which he got Chris Gayle in the 2016 T20 World Cup semifinal. When he was bowling with the white ball, he always had that delivery; just that he didn’t use it too frequently."