Former England batsman Mark Butcher lauded India’s ace off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin and called him a huge danger for England in the second Test match.
Ashwin was the best bowler from both sides in the first Test match between the Indian team and England in Chennai. Unfortunately for him, the home side ended up on the losing side, and that too by 227 runs. England captain Joe Root won the toss and batted first, putting on 578 runs.
Ravichandran Ashwin and Jasprit Bumrah picked three wickets each, as Joe Root, in his 100th Test made merry and scored 218 runs, becoming the first batsman to make a double ton in his milestone match. Ben Stokes and Dom Sibley also scored brilliant half-centuries as England piled on runs to bat India out of the game.
Ravichandran Ashwin is a fabulous bowler, end of the story: Mark Butcher
Ravichandran Ashwin returned with figures of 6/61 in the second England innings in Chennai as the visitors were bundled for 178 runs, setting India a target of 420 runs. It was a precursor for what India could expect on days 4 and 5, as Jack Leach ran through the Indian side, which was bowled out for 192 runs and lost the Test by 227 runs.
During a post-match discussion on Star Sports, Mark Butcher observed that R Ashwin’s six-wicket haul in the second innings could stand him in good stead for the rest of the series. Butcher was all praises for Ravichandran Ashwin calling him a fabulous bowler and also mentioned that his record at home was stellar.
“He is a fabulous bowler, end of the story. I don’t really have much to add to that. His record in India is sensational; he is certainly no slouch away from home either. The fact that he picked up six wickets in the second innings would have given him an enormous amount of confidence,” said Butcher.
He also mentioned that the off-spinner could be a huge threat for the England team in the second Test, which will also be played starting from February 13 onwards, if India manages to put a huge total on board after winning the toss and batting first.
“If India does end up winning the toss and batting first, they could put 500-600 on the board. Then it is going to be very very tough for England. However toss is 50-50, so England could win it again. But R Ashwin should be in good form. Hopefully, his fingers aren’t too badly damaged by Jofra Archer. He is going to be a massive danger to England going forward,” added Butcher.