Shami Says Siraj's Heroics With the Ball Propelled India to Victory in Mumbai
Mohammed Shami picked 3-17 in 6 overs in the 1st ODI (Twitter)
Indian fast bowler Mohammed Shami expressed his pleasure in teaming up with fellow pacer and World No. 1 ODI bowler Mohammed Siraj on the field after India beat Australia in the first ODI by five wickets at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
The two speedsters have been shouldering the responsibility of India's bowling unit for a considerable amount of time in the absence of the stalwart Jasprit Bumrah, who is still recuperating from his back injury.
Although Shami admitted that Bumrah's unavailability has significantly impacted the Indian bowling attack, he emphasized the presence of a robust and proficient bowling lineup, capable of delivering top-notch performances in both white and red-ball cricket. He also accentuated the importance of team spirit and support in cricket, stating that the players motivate each other to excel and work towards a collective goal.
Furthermore, Shami praised Siraj's confidence and experience in the field, asserting the significance of cohesive and complementary bowling partnerships. The senior bowler acknowledged the necessity of leading by example and guiding his teammate in tight situations to accomplish the team's objectives.
"Siraj has been playing for a while, he has the confidence. It is important to see how well the other bowler is doing when bowling in partnerships. We try to bowl as tight as possible, keeping the ball in specific patches. As a senior bowler you have to lead the way," Shami said in the post-match press conference.
Both Shami and Siraj delivered a praiseworthy performance, with each of them taking three wickets apiece, which helped India dismiss Australia for 188 in 35.4 overs.
The 32-year-old quick articulated his nonchalance regarding the World Test Championship (WTC) final and the 50-over World Cup, scheduled to take place later this year. He remarked that as a player, it is not advisable to think too far ahead and instead advocated focusing on taking it one series or match at a time.
"There is a lot of time left for the WTC final and World Cup. As a player, you cannot think that far ahead. You never know what will happen tomorrow," he added.
The veteran bowler also emphasized the significance of workload management and leveraging one's strengths, highlighting that workload was paramount in international cricket. He stated that it was prudent to take the game series by series or match by match and emphasized the need to be smart and vigilant.
The second game of the series is scheduled to take place on Saturday March 19 in Visakhapatnam. Shami and Siraj would want to replicate their heroics from the series opener and help the hosts clinch the series.