Former Indian fielding coach, R Sridhar seems baffled by the way India has been picking Ravichandran Ashwin in their squads, offering no clarity as to whether there is a chance of the latter playing in the upcoming T20 World Cup 2022. He also discussed the team’s potential bowling lineup for the event and the best combinations available. The Indian team management has been scratching their heads regarding their picks for the squad that’ll participate in the marquee event.
At the moment, Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar seem to have sealed their place as the premier pace options. A key component of the side is bound to be their spinner of choice, given the tournament is being held Down Under. It is likely only one spinner will find his way into the lineup, making it imperative to make the right choice.
Following his performances in IPL 2022, Yuzvendra Chahal seems to be the straightforward pick at the moment. However, at the same time, it is hard to ignore the lucrative option of R Ashwin given the veteran’s experience and diverse skillset. Even though the 35-year-old managed only 12 wickets in IPL 2022, he remains a viable pick for the Men in Blue.
During a chat with Hindustan Times, R Ashwin said, “You can bowl Bhuvi and Shami twice and now that Hardik is bowling and Jadeja is an all-rounder, we have the fifth and sixth bowler covered. Now put in a leg-spinner in the mix, and that is grandmaster Chahal. That to me is the bowling combination India should go with. And if push comes to shove, you have the legendary R Ashwin to go back to. It’s T20 cricket and he’s a man who can ask so many questions.”
However, the selectors seem to be caught in two minds when it comes to R Ashwin as is reflected in his sporadic playing time. He was India’s primary spinner at last year’s T20 World Cup where he performed decently enough. R Sridhar believes Ashwin’s abilities with the bat give him a slight edge as well but the primary option should continue to be Chahal for the men in blue.
R Sridhar said, “It is a big question. Regarding Ashwin, I am totally confused. Why was he not dropped, then why was he not there, then why was he not playing the T20 in England and then suddenly why is he in the T20s for the West Indies? It is confusing for all of us. Because your first spinner is Jadeja. Ideally…don’t know Ashwin…may be because of his all-rounder capabilities. But my first option would be Chahal because he is the wrist spinner.”