“I put my hand up and said I will start” – Ravichandran Ashwin shares how he got to bowl with the new ball
By SMCS - Feb 27, 2024 10:00 am
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Veteran Indian off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin got to bowl with the new ball in India’s second innings on Day 3 of the Ranchi Test that too for the first time in the ongoing Test series against England. The move worked for India as Ashwin got the wickets of Ben Duckett and Ollie Pope on back-to-back deliveries as well.

Ravichandran Ashwin
Ravichandran Ashwin takes 500 Test wickets

Speaking to the host broadcaster, Ravichandran Ashwin said: “I have always enjoyed bowling with the new ball and today was one of those days where Rohit just said in the huddle, ‘You both (Ashwin) are starting. Who wants to start?’ I put my hand up and said I will start the over from this side. The new ball has some sort of attachment. I love bowling with the speed (off the surface).”

Ravichandran Ashwin claimed his 35th five-wicket haul in Tests and ensured that India were bundled out for just 145, setting India a target of 192 to win the fourth Test as well. However, Ashwin said that there wasn’t much help in the pitch with the new ball and he had to depend on getting the ball to dip to outfox the batters as well.

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“Somehow when I come to the eastern part of the country, I find there’s not enough bite off the surface. The bounce is almost shin height. So I had to go for the sidespin and had to hammer the ball on the pitch for a long part of the first spell. From the other end I found there was a bit of grip with the older ball,” Ravichandran Ashwin again shared.

Ravichandran Ashwin
Ravichandran Ashwin dismissed Joe Root

Ravichandran Ashwin also lauded Kuldeep Yadav for a sensational performance as well.

“I thought Kuldeep bowled brilliantly. What I really loved about Kuldeep today was the way he was working on his run-up, changing momentum. When you can change up the pace like that and change the trajectory, I think he is double the bowler he is. Really happy for him. I stole the fifer away from him but that’s how the game goes,” he added.

“I think we were a bit too harsh on KD (Kuldeep). Got him to bat earlier than what he would have expected. But I felt his defense was gun, he was showing a lot of composure, kept the dressing room very calm,” Ravichandran Ashwin concluded. “Great composure for somebody playing just his second Test match. Tight in defense, had a great game plan, wasn’t going bonkers, picked the right bowler to hit. It was a huge lift. We had batted through till Lunch, almost getting us on par (with England). If you would have given us even 70-80 runs ahead (lead for England) going back to the hotel, we would have taken it with both hands.”