London: England captain Joe Root said that his team is well prepared for India spinner Ravichandran Ashwin and is well aware of the threat the India off-spinner brings to the table while speaking to the media in a virtual interaction on Tuesday. Ashwin was not considered for the first three matches against England but keeping in mind the conditions at Oval, India might well be tempted to play the off-spinner in the fourth Test starting Thursday.Also Read - Moeen Ali, England's Allrounder, Set to Retire From Test Cricket: Reports
“I think his record speaks for itself. He is a world-class player. We have seen him score runs and take wickets against us and we know what is capable of in Test arena. We will make sure that we are prepared for the challenges he poses coming into this Test match along with other combinations that they might throw at us,” said Root speaking to the media in a virtual interaction on Tuesday. Also Read - England to Host India For One Test Next Year: Reports
He said that the England batsmen need to be cautious and not let the reputation of the bowler get to them. Also Read - IPL 2021: Michael Vaughan Takes Sly Dig at BCCI After T Natarajan Tests Positive For COVID-19
“Ultimately, you can get wrapped up and end up playing the players, play the deliveries that is important. The situation you find yourself in. Whoever it is we face up against this week is, just play the ball, not the reputation. And it will be the same if we come up against him,” he said further.
The 30-year-old, who has become England’s second-highest run-getter in Test cricket during the ongoing series said that his side will be prepared for any face that might be thrown at them.
India have a couple of batsmen in the wings — like Mayank Agarwal and Hanuma Vihari, who they might play to strengthen the batting order.
“We will certainly be as well-prepared as we can be. We will look at all the analytical data. And also take into (account) the conditions we will be up against and make sure we have the plans in place. They will be coming into a series halfway through, which is never easy and we just have to keep applying the pressure as a bowling group and make it difficult for them,” said Root.
(With IANS inputs)