‘He's at his confident best’: Virat Kohli explains why R Ashwin was selected over wrist spinners for T20 World Cup
- Speaking in a media interaction, Kohli said, “Ashwin has been rewarded for reviving his white-ball skills altogether. He bowls with a lot of courage in white-ball cricket.”
Virat Kohli has finally opened up on the selection of Ravichandran Ashwin in the 15-man squad for the T20 World Cup which began on September 17 in the UAE and Oman. The Indian captain said the veteran off-spinner has received the reward for reviving his skills in the limited-overs format.
India will begin their campaign against arch-rival Pakistan on Sunday. Before the much-anticipated clash, they face England and Australia in warm-up games. Ashwin, who recently played for the Delhi Capitals in the IPL, will be a crucial player of the spin department. He has done wonders in the past with his partner Ravindra Jadeja and captain Kohli is counting on the experience his premier has gained over the years.
Speaking in a media interaction, Kohli said, “Ashwin has been rewarded for reviving his white-ball skills altogether. He bowls with a lot of courage in white-ball cricket.”
“If you saw the IPL in the last couple of years, he's bowled difficult overs, he's bowled against the top players in the IPL, and not being shy to put the ball in the right areas. Spinners can get intimidated by the way power hitters hit the ball, but Ashwin believed in his skill set.
“We felt like the way he was bowling and his variations now and his control over pace is something which is ... again a lot of experience, a guy who has played a lot of international cricket and he’s at his confident best. These guys can go in there and change the game with their spells,” Kohli added.
Ashwin made his way into India’s T20 setup after a hiatus of 4 years. His selection over the wrist spinners was a matter of surprise for several fans and cricket pundits. However, captain Kohli believes that finger spinners can be more accurate on the UAE soil.
“Wrist spinners were the ones in demand, mostly through that middle period, but now the finger spinners with that accuracy have come back into the game again, so we also have to evolve as a team with the evolving trend of the game. With Ash and the likes of Ravindra Jadeja as well, performing beautifully. These guys can be very consistent,” Kohli concluded.