Get all your news in one place.
100’s of premium titles.
One app.
Start reading
The Hindu
The Hindu
S. Dipak Ragav

Ashwin has moved the craft of spin bowling forward, says Dravid

Indian cricketer R. Ashwin was felicitated by the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association in a glittering ceremony at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium on Saturday for his feats of becoming the first Tamil Nadu cricketer to play 100 Tests and only the second Indian to go past 500 wickets in Test cricket.

The star-studded event was attended by former ICC Chairman and BCCI President N. Srinivasan, former India captains Anil Kumble and K. Srikkanth, and current BCCI President Roger Binny.

Kumble spoke about the similarities between his and Ashwin’s careers, starting with their engineering backgrounds and becoming accidental spinners.

“He is right up there with the best to have represented the country. His numbers are outstanding compared to the best in the sport and have been further embellished by his role in driving the team to victory. There is an overwhelming correlation between his and India’s successes,” said Kumble.

Kumble felt Ashwin should have played his 100th Test much earlier and praised his dedication in turning up for his club, TNPL and State side regularly.

Apart from the dignitaries who were present, Rohit Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja, former India coach Ravi Shastri and current head coach Rahul Dravid also sent in their wishes via video recording.

“He has moved the craft of spin bowling forward through his hard work, dedication, innovation and desire to improve, and that’s a great legacy to have,” said Dravid about the 37-year-old off-spinner.

“He has moved our understanding and knowledge of spin bowling forward over the last 15-16 years.

“Ashwin has left the art and science of spin bowling in a much better place.”

Shastri added, “Spinners mature with age, and you still have a lot of cricket left in you. It is an enormous achievement.”

Meanwhile, N. Srinivasan spoke with candour, saying, “This is an emotional meeting for me. Ashwin is my son. Playing 100 Tests and getting 500 wickets is beyond imaginable. He has overcome many obstacles and is a team man; that is what I like about him.”

The TNCA bestowed upon Ashwin an exclusive event Blazer and a Mace, a special occasion stamp, a symbolic ‘500’ memento embedded with 500 gold coins, a silver memento for completing 100 Tests, and a cheque for ₹ one crore.

In his acceptance speech, Ashwin fondly recalled his early memories of getting selected for the TN under-14 side and receiving his first IPL contract from Chennai Super Kings after his match-winning efforts in a league game for Jolly Rovers against India Cements.

“This place has given me so much. I always keep coming back to the TNCA. Tomorrow, I might not be alive, but my soul will be hanging around this place,” said Ashwin.

Sign up to read this article
Read news from 100’s of titles, curated specifically for you.
Already a member? Sign in here
Related Stories
Top stories on inkl right now
Our Picks
Fourteen days free
Download the app
One app. One membership.
100+ trusted global sources.