'If my emotions get the better of me, then I’m not thinking clearly' - Jasprit Bumrah
Jasprit Bumrah spoke of how he learnt to keep a calm head under pressure, which benefitted him immensely with the ball.
Jasprit Bumrah opened up on learning the art of controlling his anger and aggression on the cricket field and channelising his nature for the betterment of his performances for India. The Indian spearhead spoke of how he was letting the anger get the better of him and had to understand the importance of a calm head.
Bumrah said when he started off his career for Gujarat, he had the "fire" burning inside him all the time, but he quickly learnt to cultivate character traits that would help him use that aggression to his "advantage" with the ball in hand.
Spotted by former India coach and the then Mumbai Indians (MI) head scout John Wright during a first-class game between Gujarat and Mumbai during the 2012-13 season, Jasprit Bumrah emerged as one of the raw promising talents from IPL 2013. His MI debut featured the big-name scalps of Chris Gayle, Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).
Back then, Bumrah was seen giving away pumped-up roars at the batter after each wicket. Now, his breakthroughs for India follow only a wide grin, with his hands held high in a simple expression of his happiness. The transition from a highly expressive individual to an unruffled character was difficult to achieve but one that has been critical to the pacer's success, he says.
Jasprit Bumrah on taming the anger-beast inside him
"When I was coming up, I was like any other fast bowler who gets angry, who has that aggression, who has that fire. And I still do, but I try to use it to my advantage. Because if my emotions get the better of me, then I’m not thinking clearly," Bumrah told GQ in an exclusive.
While a mighty successful figure in world cricket right now, the pacer has also had his fair share of ups and downs, including being criticised heavily for a no-ball that gave Pakistan centurion Fakhar Zaman a reprieve in the 2017 Champions Trophy final loss. The pacer says reactions to lack of performances and failures have made him "humble" with time.
"It makes you very humble, for starters, because in sport one day could be good and the next could be bad. That teaches you to be grateful for what you’ve got, and also to just accept what life gives you," said Bumrah, who is currently standing in race against time to be fit for the T20 World Cup in Australia following a recurring back injury.
"In sport, there are a lot of results that you cannot control. Like in life there are a lot of scenarios that you cannot control, so I have learned a lot from sport. You get to travel, meet new people, and get new perspectives. Cricket has also made me a lot more stable. It’s given me everything in life," he added.