Ravichandran Ashwin memes break internet after Nagpur show
Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin’s sensational bowling performance on Day 3 of the first Test against Australia in Nagpur sparked a memefest on social media.
Netizens had a field day on Twitter, mocking the Pat Cummins-led side for their abysmal performance against the hosts.
Ravichandran Ashwin on Saturday surpassed Australian legend Shane Warne and his former national colleague Harbhajan Singh’s tally of five wickets in Test cricket.
Ravichandran Ashwin’s feat came on Day 3 of the first Test against Australia in Nagpur, which the Rohit Sharma-led side emphatically won by a ton and 132 runs.
Powered by Rohit Sharma’s superb hundred (120) and fifties from Ravindra Jadeja (70) and Axar Patel (84), Team India put 400 runs on the board in reply to Australia’s total of 177 in the first innings.
The Kangaroos led by Pat Cummins still needed 224 runs for India to bat again. But the spin twins Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja ensured they were bowled out for just 91.
Ravichandran Ashwin was lethal on a Day 3 pitch that aided sharp spin and offered indifferent bounce. He was the one who started the collapse of the Australian batting line-up, dismissing their opener Usman Khawaja in his first over.
After that, Ravichandran Ashwin scalped the wickets of David Warner, Matt Renshaw, Peter Handscomb and Alex Carrey to send Australia reeling at 6/64.
By sending the aforementioned Australian batsmen back to the pavilion, Ravichandran Ashwin picked up his 31st fifer in Tests, taking him past Shane Warne and Harbhajan Singh in that list.
Among active cricketers, Ravichandran Ashwin has the second most five-wicket hauls after England’s James Anderson, who tops the list with 32.
Talking about the highest number of fifers at home, it was Ravichandran Ashwin’s 25th on Indian soil, putting him on a par with Anil Kumble.
However, the Tamil Nadu spinner is behind Sri Lankan greats Muthiah Muralidaran and Rangana Herath, who have 45 and 26 five-wicket hauls respectively.
The brace against Australia at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium also took the Indian tweaker’s tally of scalps in home conditions to 320. With this, he went past another Shane Warne milestone as his tally of wickets at home now surpasses the late Australian spinner.
Ravichandran Ashwin’s 97 wickets came against Australia, making him the bowler with the second most wickets in matches against the Kangaroos. With 111 dismissals against the Australians, Anil Kumble holds the top spot in this segment. Ashwin took over from Harbhajan Singh and Nathan Lyon, who took 95 wickets each.
After leading India to the comprehensive victory, the Chennai-born bowler revealed that he has made some changes to his performance ahead of the Border Gavaskar Trophy against Australia.
“I think that person is long gone. However, I changed my action for this series. But that has nothing to do with how Australia prepared for the series. Every team that goes on tours, we know how hard it is to start tours. We try to recreate game scenarios as much as possible. Australia will do it as we will when we go to Australia or England. We would do that too. For me, there are different reasons why I changed my load. I did it and I am happy that it came through just fine,” said Ashwin.
“Look, it’s not just Jadeja alone anymore. Before going past Jadeja, I must say, he is an invaluable asset. We’ve played quite a bit of our careers together as spin bowlers for our country and when you start early, you’re a bit young, you’re a bit instinctive. You don’t realize how important each other is. But over the years, over the four or five years, I realized how much of an asset he is to the team and how important he is to me as a bowler as well. He doesn’t give anything away. He allows me to experiment a little more. Be a little more creative. Which is my natural self. The way he bats is phenomenal. Can’t leave Axar too far behind. But I think we are extremely lucky to have three spinners who can bat,” concluded the 89-Test veteran.
Meanwhile, Australian captain Pat Cummins credited Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja’s spectacular performance with the ball for India’s triumph during the weekend.
“It was tough out there and the bowlers were fresh. Here in India you need to be able to bat big to get a score and give bowlers rest. It’s disappointing and we weren’t quite up to it,” said Pat Cummins after his team’s defeat in Nagpur.
“There are a few things. I thought Jadeja bowled very well. We are talking about two of their big spinners in their own conditions. So, it’s always difficult for Aussie spinners, who have grown up on different wickets, to replicate them,” he said.
“Don’t think there was any surprise out there and we knew what to expect. Sometimes you have to be a little brave and proactive to put the pressure back on the bowlers. It’s easier said than done as they are world-class performers,” the Australian captain added.