IPL 2016 was quite a forgettable journey for the latest recruits of the league – Rising Pune Supergiants. The MS Dhoni-led side had a terrible outing in their maiden IPL as the team struggled to win on a consistent basis. Barring MS Dhoni’s heroics in the last game against Kings XI Punjab, there was nothing much to write about this side.
However, the Supergiants did well by unearthing a really talented spinner in the form of M. Ashwin. The leg-spinner was among the finest bowlers in the tournament as his unorthodox style of leg spin made life difficult for the batsmen. Ashwin was among the leading wicket takers in the tournament up to a certain point.
The leg spinner recently revealed that he took tips from South Africa’s ace spinner Imran Tahir. “I got to know him during India’s ODI against South Africa at Chepauk last year. Tahir was watching me closely when I was bowling at the nets to the South Africa players. He came up to me and praised the way I was bowling especially the googly. I showed him the grip I use while bowling a googly and he was keen to learn,” said Ashwin to TOI.
“While he was looking to fine tune his googly, I was keen to learn how to bowl the flipper from him. Tahir is someone who bowls it very well, and he didn’t mind sharing the secrets of his skill,” Ashwin further added, about taking tips from Tahir.
The young spinner said that he felt privileged after working under someone as accomplished as MS Dhoni. “To have played alongside a host of international stars and be captained by one of the best — MS Dhoni, I couldn’t have asked for more. The biggest takeaway for me was these stars’ involvement with the game. The way they train, maintain their diet and prepare for a game was something I learnt,” said Ashwin.