Ravichandran Ashwin was not picked in India’s 15-member squad for the ODI World Cup, which starts on October 5. However, his chances of featuring in the showpiece event have increased after an unfortunate injury to all-rounder Axar Patel. Axar was initially named in the 15-man squad for the World Cup, however, the 29-year-old suffered an injury during the Asia Cup and is currently in a race against time to make it to the marquee event.
The Tamil Nadu off-spinner has featured in the first two ODIs thus far and shown exemplary form. In the first ODI, he conceded 47 runs for one wicket in his quota. In the second ODI, he finished with figures of 3/41 in seven overs. He used his variations to good effect and the Australian batters looked all at sea while trying to score against him. With such noteworthy outings, there is a huge possibility of Ashwin making a late entry into the Indian World Cup side if Axar doesn’t recover in time.
Former Australian captain Aaron Finch felt that Ashwin would struggle to find a place in the World Cup but his experience could come in handy for the players who will feature in the prestigious event. Finch went on to suggest that Ashwin could be a mentor for the ‘Men in Blue’ during the World Cup.
“I think he (Ashwin) might struggle to make it to the final 15, but as somebody who has played so much cricket, I think the rest of the group that is with the Indian team for this current series against Australia, they could learn so much about big gameplay,” Aaron Finch said while speaking to Star Sports ahead of the third ODI on Wednesday, September 27, in Rajkot.
“Because Ashwin is somebody that stands up in big games, whether it’s a Test match or a T20 game, he has done it all throughout his career. So I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s there at the moment as a mentor around the group, but I don’t see him making that last 15, unfortunately,” added Aaron Finch.
With Axar Patel ruled out of the World Cup, Ashwin has a chance to make a late entry into the Indian side. He has shown good form in the ongoing ODI series against Australia and his experience could be valuable in the World Cup.
If Ashwin is selected for the World Cup, he will be a key asset to the Indian team. He is a world-class bowler who can spin the ball in both directions. He is also a good fielder and a useful batsman. It will be interesting to see if Ashwin is able to make a late entry into the Indian World Cup side. He is certainly a player who can make a difference in the tournament.