Ashwin says bowling in `long sleeves` gives `competitive edge` to spinners

Sydney: Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin has said that he believes some of the game`s best spinners wore long sleeves instead of the standard short sleeve shirts during recent matches to get a `competitive edge`, a fad he himself tried his hand at shortly before the ICC World Twenty20.

The current law, introduced due to bowlers like Sri Lankan Muttiah Muralitharan-who has a permanently bent elbow- states that bowlers are allowed to flex the elbow at an angle of 15 degrees.

However, reports that it now appears bowlers are taking full advantage of the law`s leniency by dramatically altering their bowling actions and pushing the limits of the 15 degrees law in the hope of imparting greater turn on the ball and wearing long sleeves helps as it makes it harder for umpires to determine if an action is suspect.

Admitting to `doing a little bit` with his elbow, Ashwin said that he wanted to see if he can get more `revs` on the ball with his elbow while bowling in full sleeves, adding that he feels if other bowlers can get a competitive edge with this action, he can also do it.

Two of the world`s best spinners, Pakistan`s Saeed Ajmal and West Indies tweaker Sunil Narine both starred at the ICC World T20 in Bangladesh while wearing long sleeves despite temperatures being in excess of 30 degrees for most matches, the report added.