NEW DELHI: Ravichandran Ashwin‘s comeback to the ODI side for the Australia series became a huge talking point with some former players terming it a good move while some questioned the sudden inclusion of the seasoned off-spinner.
Ashwin made it to the squad after Axar Patel sustained a quadriceps tear during the recently held Asia Cup and missed the final against Sri Lanka on Sunday.
Former India batter Mohammad Kaif opines that it is the Axar’s injury that made way for Ashwin otherwise he would have never been in the scene. Washington Sundar was also named for the series and it remains to be seen which spinner gets the nod in the playing eleven.
However, Kaif reckons that there is no comparison between the two spinners as Ashwin’s experience in international cricket makes him the first choice.
“If Axar hadn’t been injured then we wouldn’t have seen this move and Ashwin would have never been in the scene. Now Axar has suffered a strain injury and that takes time to recover from. No matter what they say that he will be back in a week’s time but such injuries take at least 2-3 weeks to recover from. That is why they went for the experience of Ashwin. And remember, there is no comparison between Ashwin and Sundar. He has 900 wickets (712) across formats!” Kaif said on Star Sports.
Ashwin, who was sidelined from the India ODI set up following the Champions Trophy 2017, was recalled to the side in January last year for the ODI series in South Africa. He made his comeback after four and a half years only to be sidelined again.
Ashwin’s T20 career has also had a similar trajectory with the 37-year-old being left out of the team following the World Cup in Australia last year.