Pace spearhead Jasprit Bumrah sent an ominous signal to Australia ahead of India's much-anticipated tour Down Under with a four-wicket haul for Mumbai in Thursday's Indian Premier League (IPL) match against Delhi Capitals in Dubai.
Bumrah dismissed India teammate Shikhar Dhawan with a swinging yorker and sent back rival captain Shreyas Iyer, Delhi's top-scorer Marcus Stoinis, and Daniel Sams to claim 4-14 and the man-of-the-match award.
"I felt the opening yorker was very important," Bumrah said after defending champions Mumbai triumphed by 57 runs to reach the November 10 final.
"I had decided I was going to do that. When it comes off like that, it feels great.
"Early wickets are important especially with the dew coming in. I usually don't focus on the end result. Whenever I have tried to focus on the end result, it goes downhill."
Bumrah, who leads the IPL with 27 wickets from 14 matches, was the joint highest wicket-taker with Australia spinner Nathan Lyon when India registered their maiden test series victory Down Under last year.
India leave for Australia later this month to play six short-form internationals followed by four tests.
With Mumbai, Bumrah has received plenty of support from the other end from Trent Boult, who has 22 wickets this season.
The New Zealander rocked Delhi with a two-wicket opening over burst and Bumrah said the pair had been picking each other's brains.
"Our conversations have been very good. He is a very skillful bowler. We discuss different fields, different ways to bowl, and what to do in different situations."