Jasprit Bumrah, captaining India for the first time in Rohit Sharma’s absence due to Covid-19 failed to put a lid on the rapid scoring rate – England scored at 4.54 runs an over in their second innings. This prompted criticism from former England batter Kevin Pietersen.
Former England captain Kevin Pietersen was not impressed with India captain Jasprit Bumrah’s tactics on Day 4 of the ongoing rescheduled fifth Test against England at Edgbaston in Birmingham. Chasing a record 378 for a series-saving victory, England raced to 259 for 3 at stumps on Monday riding on three fluent half-centuries by Alex Lees, Joe Root, and Jonny Bairstow.
Jasprit Bumrah Didn’t Get His Tactics Right On Day 4: Kevin Pietersen
Captaining the Indian cricket team for the first time in his career, pacer Jasprit Bumrah has made some odd captaincy calls. Pointing out a few of them, Kevin Pietersen said that some of the decisions taken by Jasprit Bumrah were ‘pure madness’.
“I don’t think Bumrah got his tactics right today at all, and I say that with the greatest deal of respect,” Kevin Pietersen said at the of the fourth day’s play.
The former attacking batter also pointed out the problems with India’s field placements in the last session when the ball was reversing.
“There is no way with a reverse swinging ball that he should make it that easy for the batter because the batter is trying so hard to decipher which way that ball is swinging. When it’s reverse swinging at 90mph, the nicest place to bat is at the non-striker’s end, and the ability to get to the non-striker’s end as easily as they did this afternoon, it’s too easy,” he added.
India was bowled out for 245 in the second innings with the fifties from Cheteshwar Pujara (66) and Rishabh Pant (57) setting England a humungous target of 378. England openers Alex Lees (56) and Zak Crawley (46) laid the foundation for the potential record chase with their opening stand of 107. The duo had a clear intent of scoring runs at pace as England reached 100 in 20 overs.
Kevin Pietersen: It Was Pure Madness To Have Both Long Off And Long On
India bowled with an in and out field with protection in the deep for the most part of England’s second innings, which did not go down well with Kevin Pietersen.
“They had long off and long on, and that was pure madness. For half an hour that was pure madness. Even for the last 15-20 minutes of the day’s play, pull them right in, say ‘Jonny, if you’re good enough to hit me over the head, please do it,'” he said.
India did make a strong comeback with three quick wickets after a century opening stand but Jonny Bairstow (72*) and Joe Root (76*) took the game away from the visitors with another counter-attacking century-plus stand for the fourth wicket. England was only 119 runs away from pulling off another record run-chase on the stumps on Day 4.
On Day 5, Joe Root slammed his 4th ton as he is batting on an unbeaten 108 along with Jonny Bairstow -92*. England needs another 59 runs to level series 2-2.