Team India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin was pleased as punch after he completed 400 Test wickets in his team’s 10-wicket win over England at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Thursday.
Ashwin bagged 7 wickets in the match as India beat England inside 2 days at Motera to take a 2-1 lead in the four-match series and knock the visitors out of the ICC World Test Championship.
Ashwin became the fourth Indian bowler to enter the 400 wickets club after Anil Kumble (619), Kapil Dev (434) and Harbhajan Singh (417). The Tamil Nadu cricketer became the second-quickest bowler to achieve the feat in red-ball cricket after Sri Lankan legend Muttiah Muralitharan.
“It feels amazing actually [to reach 400 Test wickets]. The entire stadium stood up and clapped for me. Pleased it happened in the winning cause.
“I thought I would not start in Australia, but Jadeja got injured and I worked hard in the lockdown. Both Virat and Ravi bhai had a chat with me in Australia about my batting, and they saw something special in my bowling,” Ashwin said after the match.
— BCCI (@BCCI) February 25, 2021
“LOST 7-8 KGS IN LOCKDOWN”
The 34-year-old also spoke about how he worked on his fitness during the lockdown to keep himself ready for the rigours of Test cricket.
“I think my bowling was coming along beautifully in the IPL too. I lost about 7-8 kgs in the lockdown and everything looked upwards for me. I don’t know if I’m ageing, but it’s incredibly hard to watch the game.
“To come back [after losing the first Test] and win it is even more special. In 2015-16 everyone asked me (if I’m bowling at my best), in 2016-17, one thing is sure I’ve always wanted to improve. I won’t be surprised if I surpass myself in the future,” Ashwin said.
Ashwin also overtook Australian off-spinner Nathan Lyon on the overall list to grab the 16th place on the list which is again headed by Muralitharan with 800 wickets. He also went past 600 international wickets, becoming the 5th Indian to achieve the feat after Kumble (956), Harbhajan (711), Kapil (687) and Zaheer Khan (610).