Aug 27, 2013
India’s number one off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin had words of praise for England offie Graeme Swann, who was the leading wicket-taker in the recently concluded Ashes series, with 26 victims in five Test matches.
However, when asked if he tried to pick a few things up from Swann’s bowling, Ashwin said that he was a different bowler than the Englishman.
“I have a lot of respect for Swann,” said Ashwin, in an interview with the Times of India. “He is a great bowler and he has been for a while and has done a great job for his country. But we are different bowlers and I prefer working on my strengths.”
After a month-long break from cricket following the Caribbean tri-series, Ashwin is currently playing in the Buchi Babu tournament, where he recently picked up a five-wicket haul in the quarter-finals. “It was a much-needed break and I spent some quality time with the family. It’s been just a couple of weeks that I am back on the field, trying to get some playing time before the real action starts,” Ashwin said.
India will tour South Africa in November this year where Ashwin will have the chance of breaking Erapalli Prasanna’s record of being the quickest Indian to reach the 100-wicket mark in Tests (20 matches). However, Ashwin, who is on 92 wickets from 16 Tests said that he isn’t thinking too much into it. “I have never been a numbers man. It’s not my aim for the season to break that record, my aim is to bowl to the best of my potential. If in the process, the record happens, yes, I will be happy,” he said.
Ashwin also said that he is looking forward to partnering with the other spinners India have at their disposal, including Ravindra Jadeja and Amit Mishra. “They are quality cricketers and it’s good to see that they are all performing,” Ashwin said. “Jadeja has done well in the recent past and I have a lot of respect for Mishy. He is a good leg-spinner, has been around for a while, and I hope we all do well together.”
Ashwin said that he is also looking to improve on his batting for the shorter formats of the game. “Right now, I am working on hitting the ball a fair distance. It’s important for a lower middle-order batsman to do so in tight situations in limited-overs cricket and it’s an area that I am looking to improve.”