The tweaker got rid of a solid-looking Tom Latham for 30 and gave the side the wicket they needed. With the dismissal, he also became the first bowler to take wickets on eight previous occasions when India hadn't picked one up in the first 20 overs of an innings.
New Zealand's Tim Southee is second on the list with seven dismissals of the same kind. With Latham's wicket, Ashwin is also inching closer to achieving a milestone in the WTC.
Ashwin needs two wickets to equal Australia pacer Pat Cummins' record of 70 wickets in the league phase. He is currently third with 68 wickets. The next Indian on the list is Ishant Sharma with 36 wickets from 11 matches.
WTC final: A quick look at Ashwin's numbers
The spinner has picked up 67 wickets from 13 matches at an average of 20.88 so far.
Overall, the offie has 409 wickets from 78 matches at an average of 24.69. Ashwin has 30 fifers, 19 four-wicket hauls, and seven 10-wicket hauls. The spinner also has an impeccable record in ODIs with 150 wickets and 52 wickets in T20Is.
R Ashwin in the WTC final so far
Ashwin played a crisp knock in India's 217 earlier in the day. His 22 off 27 balls was useful runs that helped the side cross 200 after they lost wickets in a flurry. Kyle Jamieson was the wrecker-in-chief with figures of 5/31.
His bowling was top notch and at stumps, Ashwin finished up a dozen overs and had a wicket to his name. Sharma was the other bowler with a wicket as he dismissed the in-form Devon Conway for 54. The Kiwis ended the day with the scoreboard reading 101 for 2.
Kane Williamson (12*) and Ross Taylor, unbeaten on nought, saw the side through without any hiccups.
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Looking forward for Shikhar Dhawan's captaincy! - Yuvraj Singh in an exclusive Interview with SK