Leading Indian Spinner Ravichandran Ashwin, in his interview with sports journalist Sidharth Monga, opened about how it felt for him when former Indian coach Ravi Shashtri named Kuldeep Yadav as a best overseas spinner for India after he took 5 wickets in the 2019 test that took place in Sydney. The cricketer said that he felt like being “thrown under the bus” despite feeling genuinely happy for Kuldeep.
In the detailed interview in which Ashwin talked about the highs and lows of his cricketing career which spans more than a decade, said that the remark of Ravi Shashtri “absolutely crushed” him. The Tamil nadu based spinner was asked how he felt when then coach Ravi Shashti recognised Kuldeep Yadav as India’s no.1 spinner in overseas after he took a five-for in the 2019 Sydney test against Australia.
Ashwin said that he genuinely felt happy for Kuldeep as he knew how hard it is for a spinner to pick five wickets in Australia but Shashtri’s remarks left him absolutely “crushed”. “I hold Ravi bhai in high esteem. We all do. And I understand we all can say things and then retract them. In that moment, though, I felt crushed. Absolutely crushed” Ashwin said.
“We all talk about how important it is to enjoy the success of your team mate. And I was happy for Kuldeep. I have not been able to get a five-for in Australia but he got a five-for. I know how big it is. Even when I have bowled well at other times, I haven’t ended up with a five-for. So I am genuinely happy for him. And it’s an extremely happy occasion, to win in Australia” the off spinner said.
“But if i have to come and partake in his happiness, and the success of the team, I must feel like I belong there. If I feel like I am being thrown under the bus, how am I supposed to get up and come for a party to enjoy the team’s or teammate’s success ??” asked Ashwin who, However, still made it to the celebration party.
“I went back to my room and spoke to my wife. And my children were there. So we were able to, you know, shrug it off and I still made it to the party, because, end of the day, we had won a massive series” he said. Ashwin played an important role in the victory of the first test match of the series which was won by India. The remark made by Ravi Shashti after what Ashwin did for the team was quite too much for the off spinner.
“The first test seemed like distant memory by then. I took three of first four wickets after we got out cheaply. When it got really flat in the final innings, I plugged away for 50 plus overs and took three wickets despite what turned out to be a grade three abdomen tear. “In my mind, I had done something great for the team in excruciating pain but what I heard was “Nathan Lyon took six wickets, Ashwin took three”
Ashwin is a great asset for team India in both home and away conditions in the longer format of the game. He took 427 test wickets so far and became the third highest wicket taker for the country after Anil Kumble and Kapil Dev in test cricket. In the interview, Ashwin also talked about the phase where he felt like announcing retirement from the cricket due to his fitness condition.
These statements made by the cricketer making headlines with many fans of game cricket boosting courage for the 35 year old cricketer. Hashtag “Ashwin” trended in the micro blogging social media site after the Chennai based cricketer opened his heart out in the interview.