‘Jasprit Bumrah has merely followed instructions

MUMBAI: After being diagnosed with the lower back stress that has kept him out of the game since September, pacer Jasprit Bumrah did only what he was “instructed” to do by individuals concerned.

The bowler took a break and left for England to consult “specialists” as instructed. He returned home in October and went through a rehab process that included recovery, conditioning, strength training and an eventual return to bowling in the nets – a roadmap that had been prepared for the bowler’s comeback.

“At no point in time did Bumrah act on his own. He was asked to report in Visakhapatnam and bowl in the nets, which he did. He was asked to travel from Visakhapatnam to the NCA in Bangalore, which he did as instructed. The NCA told him that they could not conduct his fitness test and asked him to return to Mumbai, which he did. The decisions were not his,” sources told TOI.

In good news for Indian cricket watchers, Bumrah is back to full fitness and ‘matchready’. “Whatever the controversy, the bowler needs to be left out of it. He’s 24 years old and a prized asset for Indian cricket. People should keep their egos aside and work towards his progress, not create a controversy,” said sources.

So why did Bumrah not go to the NCA earlier? That is clearly for the BCCI to answer. “It is never the cricketer’s decision. A player will only do what he’s told to do. If Rahul (Dravid) saw no point in NCA conducting Bumrah’s fitness, he should tell the same thing to BCCI and it is for them to understand,” said sources.

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