Former Indian cricketer Sunil Gavaskar has suggested that Ravichandran Ashwin may play a crucial role for Team India in the upcoming ICC Cricket World Cup.
India, a two-time champion, is set to kick off their campaign against Australia on October 8 at Chennai's MA Chidambaram Stadium.
Ashwin, making his third appearance in the tournament, was a last-minute addition to the squad as a replacement for Axar Patel, who suffered a quadriceps injury and had to be ruled out of the entire competition.
Gavaskar praised India's talented pacers, including Mohammed Siraj and Mohammed Shami, calling them “world-class bowlers.”
Gavaskar hints at possible Ashwin role
While he wasn't certain if all three would feature in the World Cup, he highlighted their skills. Gavaskar also acknowledged Jasprit Bumrah's recent challenges but expressed confidence in his experience to bounce back.
Ashwin describing what was Sachin Tendulkar for a cricket fan in 90's.— Johns. (@CricCrazyJohns) September 29, 2023
– The God of cricket. pic.twitter.com/rr5cDWBLGn
However, Gavaskar emphasized Ashwin's potential impact during the middle overs. He believes Ashwin's experience and tactical prowess will prevent opponents from establishing significant partnerships, enabling India to restrict opposing teams to lower scores.
In Gavaskar's words, “It is the middle overs which is…we saw what good pitch this was so players can play through the line when the ball is not deviating or turn or bounce. And this is where Ashwin with his experience and his canniness, will play as a key factor.
“I'm not sure if they will play him in the XI for the big matches but he is the kind of bowler who can actually get you wickets in the middle overs, and that doesn't allow partnerships to build and subsequently, a team can be restricted to a low total.”
Gavaskar's insights highlight the dynamic mix of talent and experience that Team India possesses as they prepare for the highly anticipated Cricket World Cup showdown against Australia.