After Indian all-rounder Axar Patel sustained an injury before the Asia Cup final against Sri Lanka, Indian skipper Rohit Sharma hinted that a sensational white-ball return for Ravichandran Ashwin might be on the cards. A day after Rohit and Co. were crowned champions of Asia in Colombo, veteran Indian all-rounder Ashwin sealed his One Day International (ODI) return for the Australia series.
India have announced two squads for the three-match series against Australia. The Australia series will be India’s final white-ball assignment before the ICC World Cup. The five-time world champions will play three ODIs and five T20Is against the hosts. Reacting to India’s squad announcement for the ODI series, legendary spinner Harbhajan Singh has called out selectors for bringing reinforcements in the form of spinners Ashwin and Washington Sundar.
“First Washington Sundar, who wasn’t in the original Asia Cup squad, was called there. After that, a second player has been added for this series and that is R Ashwin. So somewhere or the other Team India are searching for off-spinners. They have probably realized their mistake that they haven’t picked an off-spinner in the team and that our bowlers can get into trouble if a lot of left-handers come in front of them. Why unnecessarily go through all this? It is beyond my understanding or they are going to make another mistake to rectify their earlier mistake,” Harbhajan said on his YouTube channel.
Ashwin last played an ODI for India in January 2022. It should be noted that no off-spinner was named in India’s 15-member squad for the World Cup. India also went without an off-spinner at the Asia Cup. The Indian think tank has also decided to rest skipper Rohit, ex-captain Virat Kohli, vice-captain Hardik Pandya and spinner Kuldeep for the first two matches of the Australia series.
“You will never pick three spinners in the team. You will choose two at the most. Ravindra Jadeja is definitely going to play, no matter how many left-handers are there in front of you, and the other spinner will be Kuldeep Yadav. No one can take his place as of now,” Harbhajan opined.