Team India’s ace off-spinner R Ashwin picked up five wickets in England’s first inning on the third day in the ongoing second-test at Vizag, helping his team lead by 200 runs as India went into their second inning.
This was his 22nd five-wicket haul which came in just 41 test matches – an achievement which has put him in the league of the great bowlers including Malcom Marshall, Kapil Dev, Waqar Younis, Courtney Walsh and Curtly Ambrose. This is being his first five-wicket haul against England, he has earned the distinction of against every country except Pakistan and Zimbabwe.
Ashwin was at the receiving end of criticism by detractors after his insipid performance in the Rajkot Test. However, this five-wicket haul has silenced the critics, helping him going past 50 Test wickets in 2016. With these 52 test wickets to his credit, he’s now just two wickets short of Rangana Herath who has claimed 54 wickets in 8 Test matches so far in 2016.
After decimating the England team, he answered back at detractors who thought he could only perform in pitches that were tailored for his bowling.
“I don’t know why these jibes come back at us. Honestly it looks like a jibe (from) where you are looking at Indian wickets. It does honestly. You guys watch the game through the day and pitch is something you can definitely assess better than we do,” Ashwin had said.
In his five-wicket haul, Ashwin dismissed Joe root for 53, getting Ben Suckett out for 5 on the second day of the Vizag Test.
On the third day, he got Stokes leg before wicket for 70, and then Stuart Broad and James Anderson on the trot, diminishing England’s hope on a good total built off their 110-run partnership on the third-day morning.