'Reward for consistency' - Reason why Jasprit Bumrah was made ODI vice-captain ahead of Iyer and Pant

Bumrah's appointment as vice-captain surprised many.

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Jasprit Bumrah
Jasprit Bumrah. (Photo by AAMIR QURESHI/AFP via Getty Images)

India’s ODI squad for the upcoming series against South Africa was announced on Friday (December 31). While KL Rahul being appointed was somewhat expected with Rohit Sharma not regaining full fitness, Jasprit Bumrah getting the vice-captaincy position surprised many. Not many saw this step coming from the selectors as the experts felt that Shreyas Iyer or Rishabh Pant could be groomed for the future.

However, if the sources close to the development are to be believed, the selectors have sent a message to both Iyer and Pant to be consistent across formats to be considered for a leadership role. Bumrah certainly deserves vice-captaincy in that case as the man has been the go-to bowler for his captain in all three forms of the game.

“Look, this is just for one series as Rohit (out injured) is almost certain to come back during the home leg against West Indies and Sri Lanka. Then KL will again become the deputy. However, the selectors wanted to reward Jassi (Bumrah’s nickname) for his consistency as well as cricket brain. That’s why he was picked ahead of Pant and Iyer,” the source said according to News18.

MSK Prasad opines on Bumrah’s VC appointment

Former Chief selector MSK Prasad, however, felt that the selectors might not have named Bumrah the captain if Rohit and Rahul both were unavailable. He added that the fact that the vice-captaincy was for just one series must have made the life easy for the selectors.

“Jasprit is a very sensible young man with a lot of rationality. So why not reward him? I like this decision as why can’t we make a fast bowler captain, If he is doing well in all formats? Unless you give him an opportunity to be a part of the leadership group, you won’t know what to expect of Jasprit.

But having said that, I would also say that possibly since it was a decision on vice-captaincy for one series, it was an easy call. Had it been for captaincy with both Rohit and Rahul unavailable, it could have been different,” Prasad said.

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