Top-ranked test bowler R. Ashwin is probably the best spinner in the world among the active players. He is the ‘Virat Kohli’ of the bowling department and giving his best to the victory of India. Ashwin is leading the Indian attack since last 5 years in all formats and leading the wicket charts since last two years. His 24th 5-wicket hauls are already the 4th most on India’s all-time list. His 52 wickets in T20Is make him India’s leading spinner in terms of wickets in that format.
In a recent interview with Cricbuzz, he talked about his younger days, his instances of self-belief (or the lack of it), engineering in college and also talked admirably of the current Indian captain Virat Kohli.
Ashwin is the most qualified cricketer in the current Indian squad. He said about his degree “My first instance was when I went to do engineering and how that translated into self-belief of playing cricket. I was at the crossroads when I was not able to make a decision if I have to do engineering or which (of the two) has to take first priority. So I stood there and decided in the second year that I had to take up more time towards cricket and that engineering had to take a backseat. Because this is what I loved doing. When I started doing that, my engineering became far tougher. People actually started harassing me and there were people, like the college dean, principal, HOD started saying that ‘You anyway earn a lot of money playing cricket, why do you want to do engineering?”
“This is meant for people who want to survive engineering.’ I had to hear all those things. So I decided ‘I have enrolled here, so there’s no looking back, let me go after cricket completely and let me also give my best for engineering’. That kind of made the steely resolve inside me. So that was one of those incidents that I completely trusted that cricket was my love and self-belief helped me get through it.” Ashwin added.
The 30-year-old talked about the selection politics in junior level and explained “I think a blow to someone’s confidence when he is very young, say when he is 16, 14, 17, can actually kill his career. It is only natural that a kid who is 14 or 15 years old and is hit by a selection drama NEEDS help. If he is helped, if the cricketer is talented, he will come through. Which isn’t something that is happening.”
ICC Cricketer of the year praised his captain during his chat and said “I think Virat has a very different kind of confidence. It is not quiet confidence, it is exuberant confidence, which can be very infectious. Many a time I have seen him say ‘Okay, don’t worry I’ll make the runs’. It could be even 400 runs and he would say he will make it. That’s an amazing sense of self-confidence for someone to have. And he’s got the extraordinary skill to back that confidence. I think his confidence stems from a lot of good work ethic.”
These two (Kohli and Ashwin) Indian cricketers are having the best time of their life. They are performing on the other planet and the performance by these two is the main reason behind the number one Test side. Kohli and Ashwin hold the key role for the upcoming Australia series and Champions Trophy.