Veteran spinner Ravichandran Ashwin returned to the ODI format last week against Australia after 20 months of absence. And this happened after all-rounder Axar Patel incurred a tear in his quadriceps muscle during the Asia Cup tournament. The turn of events in recent days has even surprised Ashwin, who laughed off when his Tamil Nadu teammate Dinesh Karthik asked him about Ashwin’s late World Cup selection during a Star Sports chat ahead of the start of the World Cup warm-up match against England.
Life is full of surprises and I honestly wasn’t thinking I would be here. The trust that the team management has shown and the circumstances have made sure I am here today. But enjoying the game has been my prime motive over the last few years and that is what I will be doing in this tournament, Ashwin said.
Regarding bowling, my concern is looking to turn the ball both ways and bring in the subtle variations, Ashwin admitted. But the off-spinner further added that enjoying what could be his final World Cup appearance will be his main focus. It is all about doing subtle variations and dealing with pressure in these sorts of tournaments.
Pressure is paramount for most players in these tournaments, but how you deal with it dictates how the tournament goes for yourself and the team. As far as I am concerned, being in a good space and enjoying the game will hold me in good stead. I have kept saying this, it could well be my last World Cup for India, Ashwin concluded.