Nottingham: Former New Zealand captain Martin Crowe has lashed out at the Indian team management`s decision to drop Ravichandran Ashwin from the playing XI comparing the treatment meted out to the off-spinner to a "wheelie bin dumped on the side of the road".
"Someone please explain why R Ashwin is now a spectator? Frankly, he would be my fourth automatic pick after Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara in this Indian Test team. He is a banker, yet he is being treated like a robber. He is being treated like a wheelie bin, dumped on the side of the road. Instead, Stuart Binny is deemed the better Test player," Crowe wrote in his column for cricket website.
Crowe didn`t mince words in his column stating Ravindra Jadeja`s left-arm spin as "nothing short of ordinary".
"India have a tremendous opportunity to topple this shaky England unit. To do so they need every department covered. Normally, spin would be India`s sure thing. No longer is that case if Ravindra Jadeja is deemed your best spinner," the 51-year-old veteran of 77 Tests and 143 ODIs said.
He went to the extent of saying that Jadeja`s inclusion in the playing XI "smacks of something extremely odd".
"It smacks of something extremely odd. Jadeja can bat, often flamboyantly and recklessly, and as a leftie at No. 7 he can do some damage. But his left-arm spin is nothing short of ordinary. At best he is a third-choice spinner in Indian conditions, where three are often needed.
"In England, you just need your one best spinner - something England would kill for - and Ashwin has proven that he should be first choice and should bat at No. 8," Crowe said. He was even less charitable on Stuart Binny, who has been handed a Test cap. "To bank on Binny`s bowling is only going to stir Geoffrey Boycott into referring to his grandmother again and again," Crowe sarcastically wrote about the Karnataka all-rounder.
For Crowe, the Indian team should pick specialists rather than bits and pieces players in order to harbour hopes of a series win against England.
"India have a massive chance to do what Sri Lanka have just done. Somehow they have been swayed to think a bits-and-pieces player is going to do some damage. In the meantime, Ashwin, with one of the most impressive all-round records in Indian Test history, sits in the corner twiddling his thumbs. A mystery indeed," Crowe said.