Former India opener, Sunil Gavaskar decodes the plan with which Ravichandran Ashwin dismissed Steve Smith for the second time in two matches in the ongoing Test series. After being asked to field first, India, under the stand-in captain, Ajinkya Rahane bowled out Australia for a total of 195.
While Jasprit Bumrah took 4 wickets, Ashwin was the wrecker-in-chief as he picked three important wickets. The off-spinner first got rid of Wade, then dismissed Smith, and later scalped out Aussie skipper, Tim Paine. He was also on top of Smith in Adelaide as well by sending back the Aussie mainstay for just a 1 run in the first Test.
Smith wasn’t able to control his shot: Sunil Gavaskar
After the day’s play, Gavaskar talked about the plan of Ashwin against Smith. He started off by expressing his surprise over the amount of turn Ashwin got on Day 1 of a Test match in Australia.
The 71-year-old then pointed out that the off-spinner has been bowling straight and on the middle and leg stump to Steve Smith, not allowing Smith to free his arms and play on the off-side.
Smith played 7 balls and wasn’t off the mark yet. Hence, in an urgency to score his first run of the match, the right-hander didn’t bother to keep his shot on the ground and was caught at leg slip.
“First and foremost, I’m pretty surprised at the fact that on Day 1 there’s a lot of turn for the Indian spinners,” Sunil Gavaskar told 7 cricket.
“He’s been bowling straight, he’s been bowling on the middle and leg, it’s been pretty much a plan to try and restrict the batsmen from playing any shot through the off-side. If you look at Smith’s dismissal because maybe he was on zero he wanted to get off the mark, wasn’t able to control it,” he added.
In reply to Australia, India got off to a poor start as Mayank Agarwal was adjudged lbw off the bowling of Mitchell Starc in the first over. Debutant Shubman Gill and Cheteshwar Pujara survived the last 10 overs of the day to take India to 36/1.