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‘His form might decide the series…he comes as a package’: Ravi Shastri on Ashwin’s role in Border-Gavaskar Trophy

Shastri, under whom team India clinched back to back Test series in Down Under, believes that R Ashwin will play a pivotal role in India’s success against the visitors.

“Ashwin, you don’t want him to over-plan. He is good enough to stick to his plans as he is a real crucial player here. His form might decide the series. Ashwin comes as a package, he will get you important runs as well,” former India head coach and commentator Ravi Shastri said on a Star Sports show.

Shastri, under whom team India clinched back-to-back Test series in Down Under, believes that R Ashwin will play a pivotal role in India’s success against the visitors. The former coach also thinks that an in-form Ashwin can decide India’s fate in the series beginning from Thursday, February 9th.

“If Ashwin is on fire, that might decide the outcome of the series. He is world class in most conditions but in Indian conditions, he is lethal. If the ball starts spinning and there is enough bite off the surface, he will trouble most batters. So, you don’t want Ashwin to over-think and try too many things. Just keep it there and let the pitch do the rest because as it is, it does enough in India,” he added.

Speaking about India’s bowling attack, Shastri backed Kuldeep Yadav over Axar Patel for the role of a spinner.

“As far as third spinner is concerned, I would like to see Kuldeep play straightaway. Jadeja and Axar are pretty similar bowlers. Kuldeep is different. If you lose the toss on Day 1, you need someone who will give it a rip. If anyone spins it one Day 1, it will be Kuldeep. If the track doesn’t have too much on offer, then Kuldeep can come into play,” he said.

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