T20 WC: Varun's mystery unravelled, Team India must look beyond dew and turn to Ashwin

Image Source: ANI

Dubai [UAE], November 1 (ANI): Going into the ICC T20 World Cup, Varun Chakravarthy was seen as key to India’s plans in the bowling department. In fact, his dodgy knees were overlooked as the team management felt his four overs can turn games in India’s favour. But sadly, he has bowled 8 overs — maximum quota — and is yet to pick a wicket. On the other hand, someone experienced as Ravichandran Ashwin is warming the bench.
After the embarrassing 8-wicket loss against New Zealand, Jasprit Bumrah did put it on hindsight when asked if Ashwin’s presence could have made a difference.
“In hindsight, we could say a lot of things. In hindsight, we wish we could have scored a lot more runs, got a lot more wickets. But now looking at it, that obviously, he’s an experienced bowler. Obviously he adds a lot of value to the bowling attack whenever he comes.
“But in hindsight, it’s very difficult because as I told you, there’s dew in second innings. When the ball doesn’t grip. So the options become very difficult, very rare, and very little for the bowlers to the margin of error goes down. In hindsight, you might say that, okay, might have made a difference but it’s too difficult to judge that right now,” Bumrah said at the post-match press conference.
To be honest, Ashwin couldn’t have been worse. After all, while Varun went for 25 off his four, Ravindra Jadeja went for 23 off his two overs in the same game wherein the Kiwi spinners did brilliantly at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Sunday.
Yes, there was little dew when Ish Sodhi finished with figures of 2/17 off his four and Mitchell Santner went for 15 off his four. But then, Ashwin’s experience could have definitely been handy as he had the experience of playing two IPLs on UAE wickets.
In fact, ahead of the New Zealand game, former Australia skipper Brett Lee too pointed how Ashwin is very experienced and has a lot to offer to the team. “If you are after an angle about Ashwin, he is first and foremost a wonderful cricketer. I am a big fan and he has got a lot to offer, he is very very experienced. He is a great leader and of course, he can play every single game. They (team management) chose not to play him and that is on them. But whether he should be in the XI is up to the selectors and captain to make a call,” he told ANI.
Speaking ahead of the game against the Kiwis, skipper Virat Kohli had spoken about adapting to the conditions wherein the toss is playing a big role — thanks to the dew. “Either you can bank too much on the toss or you can challenge yourself as a team to say, okay, even if we lose the toss, we’re good enough to bowl or bat in any conditions,” he had said.
But when it came to picking the bowling combination, the team management stuck to the spin duo of Varun and Jadeja. This after Varun went for 33 against Pakistan and Jadeja went for 28 off his four. Bumrah though stood by the team management’s call at the post-game interaction and said it becomes difficult when the ball doesn’t grip due to the dew and the options become very difficult.
But then, dew alone surely cannot be stopping a proven performer like Ashwin and he can surely find a way to counter it. In fact, with India’s most successful bowler in UAE conditions — Yuzvendra Chahal — not picked for the T20 World Cup, it surely is time to bring in Ashwin’s experience. After all, Varun’s mystery has been unravelled by the opposition. (ANI)

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