Australia vs India: Ravi Ashwin to undergo fitness test ahead of third Test
With the series on the line, India will be desperate to have their spin spearhead Ashwin fit.
Updated - Dec 23, 2018 10:19 am
India’s hopes of taking an unassailable lead and retaining the Border-Gavaskar trophy was met with a big reality check when the spirited Australian side bounced back from the defeat in Adelaide to win the second Test by 146 runs and level the series 1-1. It was a result that took the cricketing world by surprise.
With India being the top Test side in the world and brimming with confidence after winning the series-opener, many had predicted one-way traffic. However, Tim Paine and Co. came up with a clinical display to remind India how tough it is to win a Test Down Under.
Batting first, Australia rode on fifties from Marcus Harris, Aaron Finch and Travis Head to score 326. In reply, India managed to post 283 despite their skipper Virat Kohli scoring 123 and his deputy Ajinkya Rahane scoring a fifty. In the second innings, Australia were all out for 243, setting India a target of 287. But India never looked in contention to chase down the total and were all out for just 140.
One of the biggest reasons behind India’s dismal showing in Perth was the absence of the spinner. With Ravi Ashwin injured, it looked like India would play Ravindra Jadeja after naming the latter in the 13-man squad. However, the team management decided to play the game with pacers and not a single frontline spinner. They soon realized their mistake as part-timer Hanuma Vihari managed to pick up a couple of big wickets while Nathan Lyon picked up 8 in the game to scoop the man of the match award.
Ravi Ashwin set for a comeback?
With the series on the line, India will be desperate to have their spin spearhead Ashwin fit. And The Mumbai Mirror suggests that the spinner will undergo a fitness test on Sunday to be in contention for selection in the third Test. It is to be noted that team India will be back to training for the first time after the second Test on Sunday and Ashwin will have to prove his fitness on Sunday.
The BCCI has given no update on Ashwin as of now. Prior to his injury, Ashwin had taken six wickets in the first Test including that of Josh Hazlewood to wrap up the game. There are also no words on Rohit Sharma who too had missed the previous game with an injury.
Meanwhile, Prithvi Shaw has been ruled out of the entire series due to the ankle injury he sustained in the tour game. He has been replaced by Mayank Agarwal. And with KL Rahul and Murali Vijay under-performing, Agarwal looks set to debut in the third Test, starting December 26 in Melbourne.
~ Written by Bijoy