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Thursday, Aug 22, 2019

India vs England: Ravichandran Ashwin gets the better of Alastair Cook, extends dominance over left-handers

Virat Kohli introduced R Ashwin, within the first hour, before 10 overs and the off-spinner removed Alaistair Cook.

cricket Updated: Aug 01, 2018 18:40 IST
Manish K Pathak
Manish K Pathak
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
England's Alastair Cook is bowled out by India’s Ravichandran Ashwin.
England's Alastair Cook is bowled out by India’s Ravichandran Ashwin. (Action Images via Reuters)

The conditions were a tad overcast, the pitch was moist, the seamers were getting the ball to jag around, Ishant Sharma was hooping the ball around, Umesh Yadav was all over the shop, he was being peeled off for runs. (LIVE UPDATES) (LIVE SCORECARD)

Kohli introduced R Ashwin, within the first hour, before 10 overs, with a hard new Dukes ball.

Eyebrows were furrowed, the pitch was never meant to offer assistance to spinners, but then Ashwin lobbed one up, it dipped, pitched on middle stump, ripped away, missed the front foot prod of Alastair Cook and collected the off peg.

Kohli ran across in full pelt, perhaps wondering if he should have played a second spinner… but quietly Ashwin had extended his domination over left handers in Test cricket.

Four out of his five top scalps in Test cricket are left handers, he salivates when he sees them at the other end; he trundles in, flights the ball and then makes is talk, the lefties can only pray!

ALSO READ | Ravichandran Ashwin strikes early but England take early control at Edgbaston

David Warner tops this list. In 14 innings, Ashwin has dismissed him nine times. Yes, majority of them have been in India, but you can only play to your strengths.

When Cook hung his head and trudged back, he was dismissed by the offie 8 times in 12 innings.

Ed Cowan, the Australian batsman who recently called it a day is third on the list and has been plucked away seven times in 7 innings.

Darren Bravo, out of favour with the West Indies side, so much talent, is aesthetic, but nowhere close to where he should have been is fourth on the list.

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Six dismissals to Ashwin in nine innings and Bravo, who is hailed as a good player of spin has struggled against the offie.

Marlon Samules trundles in at number five, and is the only aberration on the list… he is a right hander, but his numbers are pretty similar to Bravo. Six dismissals in nine innings against Ashwin.

This is a trend, one that underlines the dominance the Tamil Nadu man has had over left-handers in Test cricket. In the list of the top 10 scalps, Ashwin has had a lid over nine left handers.

First Published: Aug 01, 2018 18:13 IST

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