Former Indian opener Aakash Chopra has questioned India’s team selection in the ongoing first Test match against England at Trent Bridge,
Virat Kohli and the team management took a bold call to drop their lead spinner in Ravichandran Ashwin and played Ravindra Jadeja in the final XI.
It was a surprising call from the think tank as Ashwin has been doing a fine job for the Indian team in the recent past and had also bowled well in the World Test Championship final against New Zealand. However, the team decided to play Jadeja because of his batting credentials.
In fact, India had played both Jadeja and Ashwin in the WTC final against the Kiwis but the move didn’t pay dividends. Ashwin had scalped a total of four wickets for India in the WTC final. Furthermore, Ashwin had scalped 12 wickets in three Test matches on the tour of Australia.
India had gone with three fast bowlers in the big WTC Final but decided to play four pacers in the opening Test against England.
Jadeja bowled only three overs in England’s first innings, in which a total of 65.4 overs were bowled. Meanwhile, Ishant Sharma had a niggle and thus Shardul Thakur got a place in the final XI.
Aakash Chopra said while talking on his YouTube Channel, “India played Shardul Thakur as Ishant Sharma was injured. KL Rahul was also chosen as was Ravindra Jadeja. But there was no place for Ravichandran Ashwin, which I feel is wrong. India should have played Ashwin. If you look at the Australia tour, he was really good. Even in the World Test Championship (WTC) final, Ravichandran Ashwin bowled better than Jadeja. Why would you leave him out? This is the first match of the Test series, you should have played him. Maybe India would not have needed him much but he should have been there in the XI.”
On the other hand, India’s veteran spinner Harbhajan Singh feels playing Ravichandran Ashwin would have helped India in strengthening their tail.
“I guess if you would have played Ashwin, the tail would have been very long. You didn’t know how much spin, in fact, will be used. Jaddu has bowled three out of 50 overs till tea. So overs that you will use spin, Jaddu can bowl those overs. And why do we jump to the conclusion that Jaddu can’t be used as a lone spinner?”