Currently, the Indian team is in England for the ongoing 5-match Test series where the visitors have already taken up a 1-0 lead. The phenomenal performance of the bowlers and lower-order batsmen stunned hosts at Lord’s and Team India went on to win the competition by 151 runs. However, if there is one major talking point in the series, it is the exclusion of the veteran spinner, R Ashwin.
It has to be noted that India is currently going with a combination of four pacers and the only spinner in the playing XI is Ravindra Jadeja who provides enough depth in the batting as well. Ashwin who has flaunted his class in Tests on innumerable occasions is finding it hard to get into India’s XI as the English conditions are supporting pace. It was seen during the Lord’s Test even as all 20 wickets went in the account of pacers only.
In the same line of events, former cricketer and commentator Laxman Sivaramakrishnan had expressed that he feels ‘sorry’ for R Ashwin but it is highly unlikely that India would change its combination going for the Headingley Leeds Test. The third Test in Leeds is scheduled to be commencing on August 25 and experts assume that India will go unchanged with its winning combination.
During a virtual interaction on Sony Sports, Laxman Sivaramakrishnan said, “I feel really sorry for Ashwin because being in that position and being left out of the side is a hard thing to digest. But I think he’s taking it pretty well, and also in a way, he’s not being played in England and over-bowled. Getting wickets in Test match cricket is totally different. It’s like Ranji Trophy and Test match cricket if you compare County and Test cricket.”
He further added, “And I’m sure Ashwin with his intelligence will understand what he needs to do to get into the team. There’s plenty of cricket coming ahead. Even in India, we’re going to be playing a lot of matches. So I think Ashwin would be a definite part of the team once they decide to go in with two spinners.”