'Close to 500': Ex-BCCI chief selector says India star will be ‘deadly’ vs Australia before World Cup
The ex-BCCI chief selector has fired an early warning ahead of India's meeting with Australia in the 1st ODI.
Team India will miss the services of skipper Rohit Sharma and ex-captain Virat Kohli in the first two One Day Internationals (ODIs) of the high-profile series against Australia. Before meeting the record-time champions in its blockbuster ICC World Cup opener, India have recalled veteran all-rounder Ravichandran Ashwin and youngster Washington Sundar to its squad for the ODI series. Besides batting icons Kohli and Rohit, vice-captain Hardik Pandya and spinner Kuldeep Yadav are also rested for the first two ODIs of the Australia series.
Interestingly, India have named two squads for a three-match series. Veteran off-spinner Ashwin, who was not picked in India's World Cup squad, has returned to the white-ball setup after Axar Patel suffered a hamstring injury at the Asia Cup. Ashwin has an outside chance of making it to the World Cup squad of the Men In Blue if all-rounder Axar is unable to prove his match fitness for the ICC event. Axar is named in India’s squad for the third ODI although his availability to subject to fitness.
Talking about Ashwin's return to the Indian side for the ODI series on Star Sports, former Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) chief selector MSK Prasad has fired an early warning to the visitors. “This is very good news, I said it previously as well, Ashwin will be a handy option for the Indian team that too in home conditions," Prasad said on the show - Follow the Blues.
Ashwin's exceptional record in India
Ashwin is India's second-highest wicket-taker in international cricket with 712 scalps to his name. The star spinner and lower-order batter has an exceptional bowling record at home. Ashwin has picked up 424 wickets across all formats in India. The top-ranked Test bowler has played 118 international games in India. Only legendary spinner Anil Kumble (476) has taken more international wickets than Ashwin at home.
'He will be deadly'
"He is close to 500 wickets in all three formats combined in Indian conditions. In all teams these days, there are at least 3-4 left-handers, so against left-handers he will be deadly. I hope he can do well against Australia and get selected in the World Cup squad as well," Prasad added. Ashwin last played an ODI for India in January 2022.
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