Recently, Ravichandran Ashwin gave an interview to Times Of India where he said that he hasn’t lost any sleep over being ‘rested’ (well, he did play county cricket during that period) for the India vs Australia ODI series.
“For me, it’s not a comeback, I am not desperate at all. One day, the opportunity will come on my door knocking because I haven’t done too much wrong. So, when I get the opportunity, I will probably try and raise my game to the best of my ability,” he said in the interview.
Kuldeep Yadav (a spin option who could replace Ashwin on a regular basis) is catching everyone’s attention by his ability to outfox the batsman by his wrist-spin. He recently stated in an interview, “Both Ash and Jaddu bhai have been consistent performers for India in all the three formats. There’s no question of thinking about replacing them.”
But if you look at the last 11 games played by Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal (the other spin options), and compare them to the last 11 games played by Ravichandran Ashwin, you’ll find a clearer picture.
If you look closely, Ashwin has picked up 10 wickets in 11 matches, (let’s say 10, because one match in WI, he didn’t bowl). His economy rate hasn’t been that great either, and has conceded more than 60 runs in 6 of these 10 matches. There were also 5 games where he didn’t pick up a wicket.
Chahal has been considerably much more consistent than Ashwin and has picked up 17 wickets in his last 11 games. Yes, three of these games were against a minnow side like Zimbabwe, but he did equally well against Australia as well. He has also been a lot more economical that Ashwin, and conceded 60 runs on only one occasion.
In 10 games (he didn’t bowl on his debut), Yadav picked up 18 wickets at conceded above 60 runs on only one occasion. Barring two games, Yadav picked a wicket every time.
You decide? Does Ashwin deserve a place in the side? Let us know in the comments.
Stats sourced from Cricinfo