India pacer Jasprit Bumrah, who has regained fitness after successfully recovering from a stress fracture, will be tested ahead of his national comeback when he turns out for Gujarat in their Ranji Trophy match against Kerala, beginning in Surat on Wednesday.
Bumrah, who has been out of action since September, was named in the Indian squad for the home T20s and ODIs against Sri Lanka and Australia, respectively, next month. The 26-year-old Bumrah will be the cynosure of all eyes in the Ranji Trophy games and among those in attendance will be chief selector MSK Prasad.
Meanwhile, Bumrah has been India’s premier strike bowler in all three formats. He last played for India during the Test series in West Indies. In the second game in Jamaica, he became only the third Indian to take a Test hat-trick after veteran off-spinner Harbhajan Singh and pacer Irfan Pathan.
Bumrah’s comeback was on the cards specially after he bowled full tilt in a training session ahead of the second ODI against the West Indies in Visakhapatnam last week.
He has has taken 62 Test wickets in 12 games at 19.24 besides 103 and 51 scalps in ODIs and T20s respectively at 21.88 and 20.17.
Gujarat will be bolstered by Bumrah’s inclusion.They come into their second game of the tournament after comfortably beating Hyderabad in an away game. Kerala, on the other hand, will be under pressure to deliver following their defeat to Bengal at home. In their tournament-opener, Kerala had allowed Delhi to escape with a draw.
The visiting side will bank on Sanju Samson’s good form to pull it through. Samson, who is part of India’s T20 squad, scored a hundred in Kerala’s last game against Bengal.