Jasprit Bumrah Was Labelled 'White-Ball Cricketer' Without Asking Him: Ravi Shastri

Jasprit Bumrah Was Labelled 'White-Ball Cricketer' Without Asking Him: Ravi Shastri

Jasprit Bumrah went on to make his Test debut against South Africa in Cape Town in January 2018 and is now the top-ranked bowler in the format.

PTIUpdated: Saturday, February 10, 2024, 01:21 PM IST
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Former India head coach Ravi Shastri always knew that Jasprit Bumrah was "desperate and hungry" to play Test cricket as the pace sensation did not like being stereotyped as a "white-ball specialist".

Bumrah is the first Indian pacer to be ranked No. 1 in the ICC Test rankings.

No looking back since Test debut

The 30-year-old's pace prowess was on full display as he claimed a remarkable match haul of 9/91, playing a pivotal role in India's series-levelling victory in the Vizag Test. In the process, he also became the fastest Indian to 150 Test wickets.

In an interview to former England skipper Michael Atherton, who writes for 'The Times', Shastri remembered his conversation with Bumrah where the pacer had told him playing Test would be the "biggest day" of his life.

"I remember my first call to him, it was in Kolkata. I asked him would he be interested in Test cricket. He said that would be the biggest day of his life," Shastri recalled.

"He was labelled as a white-ball cricketer without asking him. But I knew. I wanted to see how hungry he was. I told him to get ready, be prepared. I told him I was going to unleash him in South Africa."

'Desperate to play Test cricket with Virat Kohli'

Bumrah went on to make his Test debut against South Africa in Cape Town in January 2018.

"He's so excited to be playing and doing well in Test cricket," said Shastri who debunked the notion of Bumrah being solely a white-ball specialist for his exploits with the Mumbai Indians in the IPL.

"He was desperate to play Test cricket with Virat Kohli. They know, at the end of the day, no one remembers white ball averages. They will always remember your numbers in Test cricket."

Reflecting on the criticism, Shastri stressed the significance of Test cricket and the enduring legacy it creates.

"They know, at the end of the day, no one remembers white ball averages. They will always remember your numbers in Test cricket," he affirmed.

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