‘Poor captaincy’: Gambhir not happy with Kohli’s handling of Bumrah

Written by Abhishek Patil

Another day and another defeat for India in the fifty-over format. Team India continued their losing streak in 50-over cricket as they lost the second ODI to Australia on Sunday. Australia posted a mammoth total of 389 runs on the back of a super century from Steve Smith. The Indian bowlers had an off day as Smith along with Finch, Warner, Labuschagne and Maxwell smashed the Indian bowlers all over the park.

It was always going to be a difficult target to chase and it proved to be true as India lost the match by 51 runs. With the loss, India also lost the ODI series as Australia took an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match contest.

It was the second straight ODI match where India let Australia give them a target of above 370 runs. And former India opener Gautam Gambhir wasn’t happy with Virat Kohli’s captaincy. Gambhir maintained he could not understand Kohli’s decision to give Jasprit Bumrah only two overs with the new ball.

“I can’t understand the captaincy to be honest. We kept talking about how important is to take wickets upfront if we have to stop this kind of batting line-up and then you make your premier bowler bowl two overs. Normally, in a One Day game probably there are three spells of 4-3-3 overs. Or probably the maximum is four overs,” Gambhir said on ESPNCricinfo’s post-match show.

“But if you stop your premier fast bowler just by bowling two overs upfront with the news, I can’t understand that kind of captaincy. I probably can’t even explain that captaincy. It is not T20 cricket. I probably can’t understand the reason to be honest because that was poor captaincy.”

Gambhir also talked about how India could have tried players like Washington Sundar or Shivam Dube if they were facing an issue with the sixth bowler.

“They could have given someone like Washington Sundar or Shivam Dube or whoever was there in the squad to play the next game and see how they go into the one-day format. But if you don’t have anyone in Australia then it is a selection error as well.”

“Unless and until you don’t judge someone you will never be able to find how good he is at the international level. India has not taken those options to Australia and those might come back to hurt them big time,” Gambhir said.

India and Australia will play the 3rd and final ODI of the series on Wednesday.

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Abhishek Patil