Ace off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin believes one thing which will be crucial for India in the upcoming five-Test series against England is their ability to adapt and acclimatise earlier on in the series and just react according to the situation that comes before them.
India have had a comparatively good tour to the United Kingdom so far. The Men in Blue won the T20I series against Ireland and England. However, they lost the three-match ODI series against Eoin Morgan-led side, thus bringing an end to the nine-series long winning spree in the 50-overs format.
And now, India, the number one-ranked Test side, face their toughest Test when they lock horns with England in the long five-Test match series starting August 1. India came away from their recent tour of South Africa with heads held high despite losing the three-match Test series 1-2. That was largely because of their triumph in the final Test in Johannesburg. The Virat Kohli and Co. followed that up with 5-1 and 2-1 victories in the ODIs and T20Is respectively.
“We know we are a good team. It is all about responding to the situations that are thrown at us,” Ashwin told in an interview to ICC. “Sometimes I feel we overcook ourselves, overprepare ourselves. It is very important to stay in the moment and react to it.”
“What also will be crucial is how well we adapt and acclimatise earlier on in the series. But once we do, that it is all about responding to the situations and having that belief that you can retaliate at any point of time. In a long Test series, we are going to commit mistakes, and likewise, we are going to expect the opposition to commit mistakes,” he stressed.
When India last toured England in 2014, the inexperienced side were defeated 1-3 in the five-match Test series, and though the visitors bounced back to win the ODIs by the same margin, the impression that prevailed was that India’s batsmen couldn’t cope with the moving ball in England’s seaming conditions. So, it is that there are plenty of records for India to set straight this time around when the teams lock horns.
Ashwin played only two Tests in the 2014 series and picked up just three wickets. All of them in the second innings at The Oval. “I know England really well. It’s a lovely place and I enjoy going to England. I look forward to going there and enjoying playing cricket there,” he said.
“I want to try and use all my experience over the years that I have played Test cricket for, and make it for the best use, make sure that I give my best there, and come out as another cricketer who has learned as much as it is possible to learn from other tours,” the 31-year-old added.
India Squad for three England Tests:
Virat Kohli (c), Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Murali Vijay, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (vc), Karun Nair, Dinesh Karthik (wk), Rishabh Pant (wk), R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Shardul Thakur