Ian Chappell expects Ravichandran Ashwin to wreak havoc against Australia next year
Ravichandran Ashwin is without doubt the best spinner in the world in the longer format of the game at the moment. The 30-year-old is in the best phase of hie life as far as his bowling is concerned and with ten more Tests to go in the home season, one can expect him to cause even more havoc in spin friendly conditions.
Next up for him is a five-match Test series against England, starting on the 9th of November and following that, there are four Tests lined up against Australia in early 2017.
While it may seem a bit early to speak about that series right now, one former Australian skipper has already called for the Baggy Green to face the brunt of an in-form Ashwin.
Ian Chappell, among the more respected cricket commentators in the game today, has said that the Indian off-spinner can cause a lot of damage when the Aussies come to India and said that after what Rangana Herath did to them in Sri Lanka in August, they could face a similar Test on Indian soil as well.
“Ashwin has already inflicted much pain on Australia as did Laker, Prasanna and Harbhajan before him. Consequently, his dominant performance in the series against New Zealand will send chills through Steve Smith's squad. Ashwin's 27 wickets (at 17.77) and man-of-the-series award against New Zealand could be viewed as a prelude to the main performance.
“In a few months time Ashwin will face an Australian line-up traumatised by the portly left-arm Sri Lankan finger spinner, Rangana Herath. As Ashwin's spin bowling partner, left-armer Ravindra Jadeja will be buoyed by Herath's success. Not only does this not augur well for Australia's batsmen with their distaste for spin bowling, it will also revive memories of 1956 and the destruction caused by Laker and his partner — the left-arm orthodox spinner Tony Lock,” Chappell wrote in his column for ESPN Cricinfo.
The last time Australia visited India for a four-match Test series for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy was in 2013 and both Ashwin and Jadeja dominated with the ball, with the former taking 29 wickets and the latter complementing him very well with 24 scalps to his credit.
Ashwin was awarded the Player of the Series for his performance as India completed a 4-0 whitewash over the Australians, their first over the opposition at home.
Just the manner in which the Virat Kohli-led team are defeating opponents on home turf right now, it won’t be completely wrong to predict a similar scoreline this time around as well.