One of India's most accomplished spinners, R Ashwin said the reason behind him moving from the Kings XI Punjab franchise to the Delhi Capitals was to make the latter "the front-runners for the IPL title."
“Speaking on an Instagram Live session, Ashwin said, "I was coming to a franchise which had qualified for the playoffs last season, and had some very exciting players including Rishabh (Pant) and Prithvi (Shaw). I thought I could use my experience for the franchise and improve the team further. If I could help in strengthening the bowling, we could be the front runners for the title, I came with that intention."
The IPL is still quite a while away with the world batting the coronavirus pandemic. However, cricket on resumption is set to be very different with ICC looking to make adjustments in laws such not using saliva to shine the ball.
The Tamil Nadu spinner said it will take a lot practice to break an old habit.
"In the 1970s-80s, wicket celebrations meant fielders standing in their respective positions and clapping. Things like high-fives and fist pumps are more recent, so when we all step out to play again, it may take time to get used to certain things, but we'll need to adapt. For me as a bowler, putting saliva on the ball comes naturally, and it will take practice to avoid that," he added.
Ashwin, whose bowling repertoire includes the famous carrom ball, also spoke about the need for innovation in modern-day cricket. "For me as a cricketer, updating and innovating myself is what keeps me going," he said.
The off-spinner also touched on the aspect of mental health in sport and asserted that it is extremely critical.
"During the span of your career, you spend so many years travelling and living in hotels, you start losing relationships on the way. And this is something people don't understand. I think to avoid that, it is really important to have someone inside the team with whom you can talk about anything - I believe that is very healthy and critical."
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