Ravichandran Ashwin © Getty Images
Ravichandran Ashwin © Getty Images

Is Ravichandran Ashwin being considered as Test specialist? It is something most of the Indian fans are wondering at the moment. The Indian all-rounder is currently playing county cricket for Worcestershire, and has not been recalled for the home series against Australia. In fact, Ashwin was not picked for the limited-overs series against Sri Lanka. VVS Laxman, however, believes that Ashwin is a key member for India in all three formats and his leadership skills are an added boost. ALSO READ: Top 5 Indian batsmen and bowlers in ODIs

 

Ashwin was below par in the 2017 Champions Trophy, and as was his spin-twin Ravindra Jadeja, Laxman believes that it is a matter of time till Ashwin returns to the ODI side with a bang.

“Ashwin, the way he has had success in Tests, the success has not been the same in one-dayers. But having said that, over the last two years he has not been a regular member of the ODI side. That is why it is very tough to judge a player’s performance, if he is not given a long rope. But I still feel Ashwin is a very valuable player in all the three formats. He is someone who is a leader, and I always respect players who not only do well, but are also leaders within the group, and that is what Ashwin is. I believe he will be waiting for his chance, whenever he gets it, to prove a point,” Laxman told Hindustan Times.

The young Indian spinners — Akshar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal — have done well in their limited chances, which makes it more difficult for Ashwin and Jadeja to return. The Indian team management and chief selector MSK Prasad have often pointed out on rotation policy, so the spin duo are definitely in scheme of things as far limited-overs cricket is concerned.

Rahane, the leader

Laxman heaped praises on Indian captain Virat Kohli for excelling in all three formats. However, he did mention the importance of break to address the fatigue issue.

“Virat is someone who loves the challenge. He has got lot of pride in his game and in leading this team. I’m sure the selection committee, team management and Virat himself will have a clear idea on when to take a break. It is also important for him, not only him but when someone plays all three formats, to be very smart. You don’t want to get injured at the wrong time,” Laxman added.

He also hailed Ajinkya Rahane as a leader within the group. He also cleared doubts about the Mumbaikar’s ability in limited-overs cricket. Laxman added, “Rahane is a leader within the group. He captained brilliantly in Dharamsala (in the fourth Test win over Australia). He was Man-of-the-Series in the West Indies. Rahane has more often than not played in ODIs as an opener. But he is in the mix.”

India take on Australia in the first ODI at Chennai on Sunday, September 17.