Ravichandran Ashwin Should Be Considered In T20I WC If He Has A Good IPL 2021: Laxman Sivaramakrishnan

Ravichandran Ashwin Should Be Considered In T20I WC If He Has A Good IPL 2021: Laxman Sivaramakrishnan

Ravichandran Ashwin of India. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
Ravichandran Ashwin of India. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Laxman Sivaramakrishnan, former Indian leg-spinner believes veteran off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin still has a lot to offer in white-ball cricket. Ravichandran Ashwin has not represented India in white-ball cricket since 2017, but he has proved to be more than a handful in the IPL.

Laxman Sivaramakrishnan feels Ravichandran Ashwin’s experience will be very handy for the Indian team in the T20 World Cup, especially if the opposition chooses to field left-handers.

Laxman Sivaramakrishnan
Laxman Sivaramakrishnan. (File)

Laxman Sivaramakrishnan: If Opposition Has Many Left-Handers, Off Spinner Ravichandran Ashwin Should Be Considered If He Has A Good IPL 2021

Speaking at a press conference arranged by Sony, the 55-year-old explained how Ravichandran Ashwin could be an asset to the Indian white-ball team. With the forthcoming T20 World Cup to be played in the UAE, the second phase of IPL 2021 (also at the UAE) could be crucial for Ravichandran Ashwin.

Delhi Capitals player Ravichandran Ashwin. (Photo | IPL)
Delhi Capitals player Ravichandran Ashwin. (Photo | IPL)

“Yes, he (Ravichandran Ashwin) is one of the outstanding bowlers we’ve had in the last few years. His experience will definitely help. He bowls very well to left handers. He’s not a slouch on the field, he can field reasonably well and is a safe catcher.

“He has worked hard on his fielding and fitness. He should be considered in my opinion. If there are a lot of left handers in the opposition, you want your best off-spinner to be bowling to them. If Ashwin has a good IPL in the UAE, he should be considered.”

Ravichandran Ashwin has last featured in an ODI and T20I in 2017 in June-July against West Indies. He has 150 ODI scalps in 111 ODIs.  Ravichandran Ashwin’s last international ODI game was on 30 June 2017 in the 3rd ODI at North Sound against the West Indies.

He conceded 29 runs in his 10 overs, taking three wickets in a match that India won by 93 runs, and has not played for India in ODIs since. He has played 46 T20Is and taken 52 scalps, the last of which came in August 2016. He has picked only 1 scalp playing 5 matches in IPL 2021 so far before pulling out due to the Second Wave of Covid-19 and to support his family during the testing times.

Laxman Sivaramakrishnan: Kuldeep Yadav Has To Work Harder Both Technically And Mentally And Can Comeback To T20 World Cup If He Has A Good IPL 2021

Laxman Sivaramakrishnan feels Kuldeep Yadav has lost confidence in his bowling and will need a lot of support from the team management. The left-arm wrist-spinner has struggled to consistently feature for India in the last few years.

However, the Sri Lanka tour could be a golden opportunity for him to make a strong comeback and make his case for the T20 World Cup stronger. Laxman Sivaramakrishnan feels Kuldeep Yadav will need to work harder if he wants to make it to the showpiece event.

“Work needs to be done on Kuldeep, both technically and mentally. He is still very young, a rare kind of a bowler. He can come back and be very useful for India. It doesn’t help if your IPL team drops you. That’s where you build your confidence. If he works hard and has a good IPL, he can have a good chance of a comeback.”

Kuldeep Yadav. [Photo: Twitter]
Kuldeep Yadav. [Photo: Twitter]
Compared to the 2018 season – where he played 16 matches for KKR, Kuldeep Yadav featured in just 9 games for the franchise in 2019 followed by 5 matches in IPL 2020. Kuldeep Yadav didn’t feature in a single game in the first half of the IPL 2021 and is all but certain to sit out the T20 World Cup. Hence, the upcoming tour of Sri Lanka, which will feature most of India’s fringe players, will be critical for him to try and win back his place in India’s first XI.

With spinners like Sunil Narine, Shakib Al Hasan, Harbhajan Singh, Pawan Negi, and Varun Chakravarthy in the ranks of KKR, it remains to be seen whether the 26-year-old Chinaman spinner Kuldeep Yadav will get enough chances in IPL 2021 to prove his doubters wrong.

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