Ravichandran Ashwin is an Indian cricketer known for his bowling. He is a right arm off break bowler and a right handed batsman and represents Tamil Nadu in domestic cricket and as of 2016; he plays for Rising Pune Super Giants in the Indian Premiere League (IPL). Ashwin has had a brilliant cricketing career so far and he also holds the record of the fastest Indian to reach 50,100,150 and 200 wickets in Test Cricket. In September 2016, in the first test match of New Zeland Tour of India, Ashwin reached the 200 wicket mark by dismissing Kane Williamson and became the fastest Indian and second fastest overall to hold this record. Apart from Ajantha Mendis, Ashwin is the only bowler in recent times who knows to bowl the carom ball. He is also the highest wicket taker in Twenty20 international cricket for India.
Ashwin was born to Ravichandran and Chitra in a Tamil Brahmin family on 17th September 1986. His father Ravichandran was a cricketer himself and he played at the club level as a fast bowler. Ashwin completed his schooling from Padma Seshadri Bala Bhavan and later from St. Bede's. He then graduated with a B.Tech Degree in Information Technology from the SSN College of Engineering and also worked for a brief period with Cognizant Technology Solutions.
From an early age, Ashwin has been playing cricket and always wanted to be an opening batsman. He, however, did not receive much success as a batsman and was advised to play as an off break bowler. His performance as an off-break bowler was highly appreciated and he made his first class debut for Tamil Nadu. A spectacular performance quickly helped him to be made the captain for the next season. While playing for U-19, he was nicknamed as 'Dada' during the Dharmashala Tour. After a brilliant domestic career, he was purchased by the Chennai Super Kings in the IPL and he was then mentored by Mahendra Singh Dhoni himself. Ashwin gained the spotlight by his extraordinary skills as a bowler that helped him to be one of the most economical bowler in the tournament. After the IPL Tournament, his performance was again appreciates as the leading wicket taker in the 2010 Champions League Twenty20 in South Africa. In June 2010, he made his international debut in limited overs format against Zimbabwe. In June 2010, he made his ODI debut against Sri Lanka and took two wickets in the match and scored 34 runs in his debut match. He then got a chance to play in the Australia Tour of India and he became the most economical bowler in the only match he played with a score of 1/34 in nine overs. In the India - New Zealand Series of 2010, India won a 5-0 whitewash and Ashwin was the highest wicket taker of the tournament, closing the tournament with 11 wickets. Due to his continuous performance, Ashwin was included in the 15 member for the 2011 World Cup along with senior players like Harbhajan Singh and Piyush Chawla. He made his debut in World Cup against West Indies and bowled 2/41 in 10 overs. He also played the Quarterfinal against Australia and picked 2/52. He didn't play any other match in the world cup tournament. Ashwin made his test debut in November 2011 against West Indies and in his maiden test, he took nine wickets and became the second highest wicket taker in the debut match by any Indian after Narendra Hirwan. For his performance, he won the Man of the Match award. In the third match of the series, he took 5/156 and also scored his maiden international century and scored 103 runs of 118 balls and won the man of the match as well as man of the series award. Ashwin was from then regularly a member of the Indian Test Cricket Team and in the late 2012, he became the fastest Indian to record 50 wickets in Test cricket and he completed this achievement in just nine games. In March 2013 in the four test match of Australia's Tour of India, Ashwin was brilliant with his bowling and he took 29 wickets in four matches and broke the record of 25 wickets in a series held by Anil Kumble. He also won the Man of the Series award for his performance. He also represented India in the 2015 ODI World Cup and helped India in reaching to the Semi Finals of the tournament. He since then has been a part of the Indian Cricket team and has been performing extremely well for the team. In September 2016, in the first test match of New Zeland tour of India, Ashwin reached the 200 wicket mark by dismissing Kane Williamson and became the fastest Indian and second fastest overall to hold this record.
Ashwin is married to his childhood friend Prithi Narayanan and the couple has a daughter named Akhira. He due to his performance has been a recipient of many awards and recognition and has been awarded the BCCI's Polly Umrigar Award for International Cricketer of the Year in 2012-13, ICC Test Team of the year in 2013 and has also been honoured with Arjuna Award by the Indian Government for his achievements in the sports. In the IPL, after Chennai Super Kings were accused in the scam and suspended for two years, Ashwin was then picked up by Rising Pune Supergiants for 7.5 Crore and he is playing under the captainship of M S Dhoni. Due to his immense popularity, Ashwin was roped in by Tamil Nadu State Election Commission to create electoral awareness in the state and Ashwin in the advertisement advises the voters to check whether the names of the voters are included in the electoral roll. In August 2016, after winning the sixth man of the series award, Ashwin has surpassed the tie by Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag and he has won Six Man of the Tournament awards in the 13 test series he has played.