Former Indian great compares Ashwin with Kumble
Ravichandran Ashwin is the next big thing to look forward to in India’s side, his form is taking steps of maturity and he is India’s prime spinner now in every condition. The off-spinner helped India win the second Test match against Sri Lanka in Colombo to level the three-match series by 1-1.
He is proving his worth in every match not only with the ball but also with the bat. After climbing one spot the latest ICC Test bowlers rankings and claiming the eighth position, he gained ground on Bangladesh’s Shakib Al Hasan in the ICC player rankings for Test all-rounders and has reduced the deficit on the leader to 43 points.
Former India off-spinner Erapalli Prasanna said Ashwin has matured with time and now he is at his peak, reports TOI. He added that the in-form off-spinner is helped by the bowling basics he his excelling.
"He seems to be striving to take wickets all the time. In both the Test matches, he kept the batsmen guessing and it's a sign that Ashwin has matured," he said. "Ashwin has gone back to his basics. He is relying more on his stock delivery and making those subtle variations in pace and trajectory that has made him look the standout bowler in this series."
Laxman Sivaramakrishnan, India's former leg-spinner, compared Ashwin with the legend Anil Kumble and said Ashwin plays it safe with a plan in his head.
"After Kumble, Ashwin is one of the few bowlers who sets up a batsman. Ashwin plans his dismissals, and tries to outthink the batsmen. You can't get a wicket off every ball, so you have to plan properly," said Siva. "Spin bowling is all about rhythm. The moment you enjoy the feel of your hand releasing the ball, you know you are in the zone. Ashwin surely seems to be in the zone."
17 - Number of wickets R Ashwin has already pocketed against Sri Lanka, which makes him the highest wicket-taker by an Indian bowler in a series in Sri Lanka. Harbhajan Singh's 16 wickets in 2008's three-match series was the previous best.
141 - Number of wickets R Ashwin currently has in his career of 27 Test matches. Among the spinners, only Australia's Clarrie Grimmett (147), Bill O'Reilly and Pakistan's Saeed Ajmal (144) have picked more wickets than the Indian spinner in their first 27 Tests.
12 - Number of five-wicket hauls R Ashwin has taken 27 Tests. Only five other bowlers had more five-fors in their first 27 Tests - Sydney Barnes (24), Waqar Younis (16), Ian Botham (14), Clarrie Grimmett (14) and Hugh Tayfield (13). Fazal Mahmood too took 12 five-fors in his first 27 Tests. For India, Subhash Gupte's 11 hauls were the highest before Ashwin's 12.
5 - Number of India bowlers who have more five-fors in Tests than Ashwin. He is now level with Gupte, who also took 12 such hauls.
Ashwin’s batting numbers
Ashwin’s bowling numbers