India's pace bowling spearhead Jasprit Bumrah said bubble fatigue is a tough reality of the current times as he tried to explain the team's shambolic campaign in the ongoing T20 World Cup here.
India lost to New Zealand by eight wickets on Sunday and are in danger of crashing out of the T20 World Cup with three more group games left. The team is yet to win a match, having lost the lung-opener to Pakistan by 10 wickets.
"Absolutely, you need a break," Bumrah said in the post-match press conference when asked about the short gap between the second leg of the IPL and the T20 World Cup.
"But this is the reality of the times we are living in, it's difficult, it's a pandemic and we are staying in bubbles. We try to adapt but bubble fatigue and mental fatigue also creeps in.
"You are doing the same thing again and again. It is the way it is, and you can't control a lot of things over here," he added.
The Indian team had a six-day break between its first match against Pakistan and Sunday's engagement against New Zealand. Skipper Virat Kohli, after calling it helpful to cope with fatigue and niggles, described it as "ridiculous" at the toss last night.
"Sometimes you miss your family after being on the road for 6 months. All of that sometimes plays on the back of your mind. But when you are on the field, you don't think about all of those things," Bumrah said. "You don't control all of those things the scheduling and all and what tournament is played when.
"Obviously, staying in a bubble and staying away from your family for such a long time does play a role on the players' minds. But the BCCI has also tried their best to make us feel comfortable."
India have been in bio-bubbles since June when they landed in England to play the World Test Championship final. The team got a three-week break after that game against the Black Caps which was followed by a gruelling five-Test series against England.
Reflecting on Sunday's match, Bumrah said the batters tried to play "an attacking game" in a bid to give extra 30 runs to the bowlers on a dew-laden surface as that was the communication from the team management. Interestingly, Bumrah's take on playing an "attacking game" came minutes after skipper Virat Kohli's bold admission at the post-match presentation that neither his men had shown proper "body language" nor were they "brave" in their approach.
The difference in statements between the skipper and his premier pacer showed that "communication" indeed has been a problem.
"Batters wanted to give a cushion of 20 to 30 extra runs and in that process they played a lot of attacking shots, which didn't come off today. In the second innings, batting does get easier so they wanted to give that cushion to the bowlers and, in that thought process, played lot of attacking shots," Bumrah tried his best to defend the poor show.
The pacer said that communication was clear as to what the situation of the game was.
"Scoring 25 to 30 runs (on two-paced wicket) was not very easy but that was the extra responsibility that you had to take. It's difficult and that's why everyone playing the evening game is choosing to bowl first.
"There's massive difference and our batters knew they had to give us cushion. They tried their best and it didn't come off today," Bumrah said.
One of the primary reasons for India's failure, according to Bumrah, is that the team batting first found that the ball was holding up and three batters -- KL Rahul, Rohit Sharma and Ishan Kishan -- who tried the 'pick-up pull shot' couldn't execute it. That wasn't the problem in the second innings.
"In the second innings, the length ball was not holding up. In the first innings, the ball was holding and so pick-up pulls weren't coming off. So shot making was difficult. Those options changed in the second innings," he said.
But Bumrah does not want to get too bogged down by defeats.
"Some days would be good and some days bad. Don't get too high on good days and neither too low on bad days. All of these things are part and parcel, stay in the moment and analyse what went well and move forward," he said.