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India vs South Africa | Sometimes Nothing is Automatic: Ravi Shastri On R Ashwin Selection

For a fair while one of the first names on the team sheet in Test cricket has been the ace off-spinner R Ashwin, who has also always looked for new ways to reinvent himself with new variations to trouble opposition batsmen. But the off-spinner is no longer the automatic choice, especially in overseas conditions, where the fast bowlers have done well as a unit.

Cricketnext Staff |September 26, 2019, 12:18 PM IST
India vs South Africa | Sometimes Nothing is Automatic: Ravi Shastri On R Ashwin Selection

For a fair while one of the first names on the team sheet in Test cricket has been the ace off-spinner R Ashwin, who has also always looked for new ways to reinvent himself with new variations to trouble opposition batsmen. But the off-spinner is no longer the automatic choice, especially in overseas conditions, where the fast bowlers have done well as a unit.

As a result, Ashwin hasn't featured in a single Test in 2019. During the tour of Australia, he was forced to sit out in three Tests, owing to an abdominal strain. As for the series against West Indies, he didn't get a place in the playing XI.

However head coach Ravi Shastri defended the decision to bench the spinner and said it was tactical.

“Those are tactical things, which I can’t speak to you. You saw in the West Indies what happened, and now you will see the results. You can’t ask me who plays in the eleven because everyone is part of us,” Shastri told Hindustan Times.

A former spinner himself, Shastri believes that in the fight for the top spinner’s place India have more than one world class spinner.

“He (Ashwin) is world class, we got Ravindra Jadeja who is world class, we got Kuldeep Yadav who will be world class in due course, he is still young.”

The off-spinner, who has four Test hundreds to boast off, was an automatic pick for most of his 65 Tests in which he has amassed 342 wickets and bowled India to some important victories.

But the processes and policies sometimes change according to the situation according to Shastri.

“Sometimes in cricket nothing is automatic; when automatic fails you need some fuel.”

Team Rankings

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4027 115
2 New Zealand 2829 109
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 4366 104
5 Australia 3270 99
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7071 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
see more
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7748 277
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4720 262
4 India 8620 261
5 Australia 5471 261
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