Ravichandran Ashwin is famous in the Indian dressing room for his meticulous planning and studious preparation before every Test match. Revealing his regime, the offspinner said that during the tour of Australia, he even watched 8 hours of footage on the trot to construct his plans.
In a candid chat with fielding coach R Sridhar, Ravichandran Ashwin remarked that the lockdown period allowed him to revisit a glut of past video footage and pick up finer details to help his game.
"I didn't think you will ask this question here and expose me (laughs). In Australia, before the start of the Adelaide Test, I watched 8 hours of straight footage. The planning for me goes to a different level actually. I don't know why I started doing it but it was just that I don't want to leave any stone unturned."
"I used to watch a lot of footage even before but I guess the understanding of the game has gone one notch higher. During the lockdown period, I was watching a lot of cricket from the past, especially Sachin's hundred in Chepauk and all sorts of stuff on YouTube continuously. And I started picking up fine cues. And it just struck me why I haven't done this earlier. After that, I started to watch the footage with a different eye and it became fun. I was able to pick what the batsman was doing and even before I bowled the ball I kind of understood what shot they are going to play," said Ravichandran Ashwin.
Ravichandran Ashwin's preparation has been up to the mark in the ongoing series as well. He is leading the wickets chart with 24 snares in 3 games at a strike rate of 15.71. The England batters have found it arduous to handle his slick variations and have given away their wickets in the process.
MS Dhoni has a bigger stump collection than me: Ravichandran Ashwin
The last two months have been fairytale-like for Ravichandran Ashwin. He salvaged an improbable draw for his team in Sydney, made a match-winning hundred at his home ground, and finally reached 400 career Test wickets on Thursday.
Ravichandran Ashwin said he has recently started collecting match stumps to commemorate these fine achievements, but his collection still falls short of MS Dhoni's.
"I think MS has a lot more than I do. For a very large part of my career, I haven't been very good at all this. But now I cherish every moment of it and it has been quite special so I have been collecting some. Sydney (I did), unfortunately, I was not at Brisbane, then the last two games have been pretty special," signed off Ravichandran Ashwin.