Ashwin back, India spinner to rejoin team in Rajkot on Day 4 of 3rd England Test | Cricket - Hindustan Times
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Ravichandran Ashwin back, India spinner to rejoin team in Rajkot on Day 4 of 3rd Test against England

Feb 18, 2024 10:17 AM IST

The BCCI confirmed the return of R Ashwin, with the India spinner set to rejoin the team sometime around lunch on Day 4 of the third Test against England.

India received a major shot in their arm after it was announced that Ravichandran Ashwin will return to join the team on Day 4 of the 3rd Test against England. The India spinner had left the Rajkot Test and opted out of India's squad owing to a medical emergency in the family. On Friday night, he had flown back home to Chennai, as BCCI vice president Rajeev Shukla revealed, to attend to his mother, but truckloads of respect and credit goes out to the champion spinner to link back with the Indian team less than 48 hours later.

Rajkot: India's Ravichandran Ashwin bowls on day two of the 3rd Cricket Test Match between India and England, at Niranjan Shah Stadium(PTI)
Rajkot: India's Ravichandran Ashwin bowls on day two of the 3rd Cricket Test Match between India and England, at Niranjan Shah Stadium(PTI)

"The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is pleased to announce the return of R Ashwin to the squad after a brief absence due to a family emergency. Ashwin, had to temporarily withdraw from the squad after Day 2 of the 3rd Test in Rajkot to attend to a family emergency. Both R Ashwin and the team management are pleased to confirm that he will be back in action on Day 4 and will continue to contribute towards the team cause in the ongoing Test match," the BCCI," read a statement from the BCCI.

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Also Read: India vs England Live Score 3rd Test Day 4

Although Ashwin was yet to reach Rajkot by the first session, the spinner, is believed to make it to the Niranjan Shah stadium by lunch. This means that Ashwin will be available to bat later today if required as India continue to bat England out of the Test with their lead going past 400.

Ahead of the start of play on Day 4 of the Test, Dinesh Karthik, who was one of the commentators on-air, also stated that he had a chat with India's Kuldeep Yadav, who said Ashwin might be returning to Rajkot. "I am not sure but I think Ash bhai is someone, who is coming back I guess," the wrist-spinner said during a chat on Jio Cinema, and it was lauded by Sanjay Manjrekar on air after the announcement was made official. "It was very nice of Kuldeep Yadav to give us that hint," he said.

Also Read: Virender Sehwag unfiltered after Yashasvi's 'Jaisball' trounces England attack on Day 3

India without Ashwin on Day 3

Ashwin's absence was felt a little on Saturday as Indian bowlers were given longer spells, but the side produced a brilliant performance to bowl the English team out on 319. Mohammed Siraj was the pick of the bowlers with four wickets, while spinners Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja dismissed two batters each.

Ashwin on Friday had become the only second bowler from the country to reach a historic 500-wicket mark on Day 2 when he dismissed England's Zak Crawley. It also made him the second-fastest to the landmark, reaching there in 98 Tests, next only to the legendary Muttiah Muralitharan. But the day ended in an alti-climax as hours later, the BCCI confirmed that Ashwin had to leave the Test midway.

"Ravichandran Ashwin has withdrawn from the Test squad, effective immediately due to a family medical emergency. In these challenging times, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and the team fully supports Ashwin,” the statement from the board read.

Later on Saturday, India had faced another setback when Yashasvi Jaiswal retired hurt with back spasms, though the young batter did take part in practice sessions ahead of the fourth day on Sunday. And the visuals proved correct as after Shubman Gill's run out on 91, Jaiswal joined Kuldeep to resume his innings on 104 and immediately struck a boundary to get going.

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