Sport

Royals, a team that resonates immediately: Ashwin

New spell: R. Ashwin practising in the Royals colours in Mumbai ahead of IPL 2022.

New spell: R. Ashwin practising in the Royals colours in Mumbai ahead of IPL 2022. | Photo Credit: RAJASTHAN ROYALS

After helping India win yet another Test series, and becoming the country’s second highest wicket-taker in the format, R. Ashwin is ready for the IPL, in which he will turn out for a new team this season.

After his two-year stint with Delhi Capitals, the off-spinner has joined Rajasthan Royals. He believes he has something in common with the Jaipur-based franchise.

Different team

“The Royals, for me, are a team that just resonates immediately,” Ashwin said. “For me, they’ve been a different team — always ahead of their time with regard to their planning and approach. They’re very bold and experimental in the way they approach their cricket, which is also the way in which I see my game, so it should be a good synchronisation and I’m looking forward to it.”

Ashwin said the IPL had contributed to his development as a cricketer. “The IPL gives a window of experimentation, something which has enabled me to come out a richer cricketer, irrespective of the results, every time I’ve been a part of it,” he said.

He said the IPL was a tough tournament. “There are a lot of variables leading into every season which can have an impact,” he said. “Dew, pitches, the opposition, you name it and there’s a variable that can impact a game in different ways, which makes it a challenge to prepare for things in advance and you’ve got to be ready at all times.”

Praise for Samson

He regards Royals captain Sanju Samson highly. “I think Sanju has got an amazing attitude and a good head on his shoulders,” Ashwin said. “He’s always open for discussion, open to opinions around the game, so that’s a great quality to have.”

About his recent feat in Test cricket, he said it was humbling to look at what he did in terms of numbers.

“The more I’ve played, the more it’s felt like the numbers are a part of the journey rather than the destination,” he said. “In the past two-three years especially, the feeling has been great, with series wins in Australia, the comeback into the T20 team, it almost feels like how I felt when I first broke into the team, wherein a lot has been going on for me.”


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Printable version | May 13, 2022 9:58:43 am | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/royals-a-team-that-resonates-immediately-ashwin/article65245931.ece