'Don’t feel I was lacking anything': Axar on how Jadeja made it difficult for left-arm spin all-rounders to get selected
- While Sundar has impressed with the bat, left-arm spinner Axar has made his mark in just 3 matches he has played. He has 27 wickets at an average of 10.59 in his Test career.
India had a readymade spin combination for Test matches in Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja. The experienced duo have been India’s top spinners in the longest format of the game for several years and were expected to play a big part in their run to the World Test Championship finals. However, they faced injury troubles last year and it gave an opportunity to youngsters to make their mark. Washington Sundar and Axar Patel were drafted into the side and they have been exceptional in the limited opportunities.
While Sundar has impressed with the bat, left-arm spinner Axar has made his mark in just 3 matches he has played. He has been splendid, to say the least, in the matches he has played so far for India.
Axar picked four five-wicket hauls against England in his debut series. He has 27 wickets at an average of 10.59 in his Test career. Such has been his performance; there is even talk of him getting an opportunity in the WTC final.
Axar has always been in the reckoning for a place in the Indian side but did not get an opportunity for a long time. In a recent interview, Axar admitted that Jadeja’s impressive performances made it hard for ‘any other left-arm spin all-rounder’ to find a place in the team.
"I don’t feel I was lacking anything. Unfortunately, I was injured and lost my place in the ODIs. In Tests, [Ravindra] Jadeja and [Ravichandran] Ashwin were doing well. The way Jadeja was performing, it was very hard for any other left-arm spin all-rounder to find a place. The wrist spinners Kuldeep (Yadav) and (Yuzvendra) Chahal were doing well. It was due to the team combination that I was out. When I got a chance, I just tried to prove myself," Axar told The Indian Express.
Axar has played 38 ODIs for India and picked up 45 wickets. However, his last match in the format for India came in 2017.