Virat Kohli and Vijay Shankar went on to grab most of the headlines after India's thrilling eight-run win over Australia in Nagpur on Tuesday. However, it was the death bowling of Jasprit Bumrah which helped bring India back into the game.
With Australia requiring 29 off 30 balls and with four wickets in hand, Kohli had the option of handing the ball to the inexperienced Shankar before unleashing Bumrah and Mohammed Shami in the final four overs of the match. Instead, after consulting M.S. Dhoni and Rohit Sharma, he went to Bumrah, his go-to bowler on several occasions.
In the 46th over, Bumrah castled Nathan Coulter-Nile with his second delivery and had Pat Cummins caught behind two balls later. Bumrah's death bowling prompted the well-settled Marcus Stoinis to play out his next over without taking any undue risks.
The 46th and 48th over from Bumrah cost India just two runs as he picked up two wickets. Bumrah bowled 44 dot balls, the most by any bowler, on the night. Incidentally, 10 of those dot balls were in his final two overs. The number one ranked bowler in ODI cricket came up with a performance to back his status.
Bumrah, also, turned mentor to Shankar telling him what length to bowl in the final over, with Australia requiring 11 runs to win. "He told me that I need to hit the right length on this wicket... give myself a chance to hit the stumps," said Shankar. "When he said that, I was clear mentally and thought I should do that, and the only way to defend is [by] picking wickets."
Shankar hit the right lengths twice to knock over Stoinis and Adam Zampa to give India it's 500th ODI win and a 2-0 lead in the five-match series.
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