Bumrah on point in return as India edge Ireland in 1st T20

Jasprit Bumrah celebrates after taking a wicket during the 1st T20 between India and Ireland in Dublin on 18 August 2023BCCI Twitter

Jasprit Bumrah marked his first India appearance in nearly a year with two wickets as the tourists defeated Ireland by two runs during a rain-affected opening Twenty20 international in Dublin on Friday.

India sped to 45 without loss in six overs in pursuit of a target of 140 and, even though Craig Young then took two wickets in two balls, they were still narrowly ahead on the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern method when a lengthy shower prevented any further play at Malahide.

The 29-year-old Bumrah, returning from back surgery and captaining India in the three-match series in the absence of Rohit Sharma, led from the front by dismissing Andy Balbirnie and Lorcan Tucker in the opening over.

Balbirnie got a thin inside edge into his stumps while Tucker’s attempted ramp merely lobbed to wicketkeeper Sanju Samson, with Bumrah – one of the world’s leading pacemen when fully fit – taking an encouraging 2-24 from his maximum four overs.

Ireland stumbled to 59-6 after losing the toss, with Prasidh Krishna and Ravi Bishnoi also taking two wickets a largely second-string India.

Barry McCarthy’s aggressive 51 not out from just 33 balls helped take Ireland to 139-7, with the number eight hitting four fours and as many sixes.

In reply, Yashasvi Jaiswal ended the powerplay with a huge pulled six off Josh Little.

That hit proved the difference after Young dismissed Jaiswal (24) and Tilak Varma with successive deliveries.

Two balls later, however, rain forced the players from the field with India just ahead on DLS at 47-2 off 6.5 overs.

India will now look to secure a series win when the teams return to Malahide for the second T20 on Sunday.

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