Former India batsman Mohammad Kaif believes that R Ashwin will hold the key for India in the pink-ball Test against Australia starting on Thursday.
All the talk surrounding the Test match has been about the fast bowlers getting extra assistance with the pink ball, but Kaif thinks Ashwin will be crucial with the harder ball during the day.
There was speculation that India would go in with four seamers into the pink-ball Test. But BCCI announced the playing XI on Wednesday naming a bowling attack which included R Ashwin in addition to the three pace bowlers.
Mohammad Kaif took to Twitter to make his prediction for the game. He said:
“All the talk around Adelaide Test is about pace bowlers because of pink ball, but my gut feel is that Ashwin will be the key for India. Even last time he set the tone for the series by picking the top order. With the harder ball during the day Ash will be very crucial.”
R Ashwin played only the first Test during the previous tour to Australia in 2018-19. He picked up six wickets across both the innings. Five of his six victims were batsmen batting in the top four.
The pink-ball Test is going to be a real test for R Ashwin
The pink ball has not assisted spinners as much as the pace bowlers in the 14 matches that have been played so far. While the seamers have picked up 332 wickets at an average of 24.86, spinners have been able to pick up only 109 wickets which have come at 36.02 apiece.
R Ashwin's figures in Australia are not encouraging as well. He averages 48.07 with the ball in Australia compared to his career average of 25.43.
The Day-Night Test at the Adelaide Oval is going to be a test of character for the off-spinner. And since India is going in with just four bowlers, his performance will be crucial in the final outcome of the Test.Published 16 Dec 2020, 17:29 IST