New Delhi: Ravichandran Ashwin spun Sri Lanka to a low score of 183 in the first innings of the Galle Test match on Wednesday. Ashwin stood out amongst India's four other lead bowlers and made a big contribution for the team to give them impetus in the first Test match.
Ashwin's figures 6/46 on Wednesday, is the best ever by any Indian spinner in the first innings of an away Test match. Ashwin looked threatening all day and kept his composure to land the ball in perfect areas and get the batsmen out.
It was Ashwin's 11th five-for in Test cricket and it is a figure he will look to build on in.
— BCCI (@BCCI) August 12, 2015
Ashwin has handled India's spin department well over the past few years and that was again visible on Wednesday in Galle. India went in with three spinners and Ashwin handled the mantle with ease ahead of Harbhajan Singh and Amit Mishra. Apart from Ashwin, only Ishant Sharma looked like making some purchase from the pitch, whereas the others were ineffective.
The short catching fielders did remarkably well to hold on to the ball. Ashwin has continued from where he left off at Bangladesh where he got a five-for in a rain-hit Test match.
Even in Australia in the beginning of this year, Ashwin showed sparks of brilliance by getting 12 wickets in three Test matches. The off-spinner has acknowledged he needs to perform well away from home and he has started to do that off late.
The big test for him though will be taking wickets outside the sub-continent where he has struggled earlier. India's Test bowling needs consistency and Ashwin is the premium bowler who has looked a leader in the pack as the others have been inconsistent with their form.
India has been dependent on Ashwin and it looks good that the bowler is ready to take the responsibility and get India back to the top in the longer version of the game.