ENG vs IND: Aakash Chopra not in favour of including Ravi Ashwin for third Test

Many fans and experts have been batting for Ashwin’s inclusion for the third Test.

Aakash Chopra and Ravichandran Ashwin
Aakash Chopra and Ravichandran Ashwin. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

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After scripting a memorable 151-run triumph at Lord’s, Team India would like to continue their sensational run in the third Test against England. The encounter takes place at the Headingly in Leeds and will get underway on August 25. With Virat Kohli’s men having a 1-0 lead in the five-match series, a victory in the third Test would earn them an unassailable 2-0 lead.

Hence, the visitors would be raring to put their best foot forward. However, it would be interesting to see if India make any changes in their playing XI. It has to be noted that veteran off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin didn’t feature in the first two Tests with India fielding a four-man pace attack. Moreover, left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja went wicketless in the first two games. He, however, did well with the bat.

Hence, many fans and experts have been batting for Ashwin’s inclusion for the third Test. However, former Indian opener Aakash Chopra has a different opinion on this. Chopra reckons Ashwin would continue to warm the benches with the Headingly track not providing much assistance to spin bowlers. Moreover, India’s fast-bowling quartet was phenomenal in the first two games.

In Leeds, spinners aren’t required much: Aakash Chopra

“Not at Headingly (on Ashwin’s inclusion). India did have an opportunity to play Ashwin at Lord’s with the pitch being dry and tired. However, in Leeds, spinners aren’t required much. Moreover, the success of this fast-bowling quartet has instilled fears in England camp,” Chopra said on his YouTube channel.

“Yes, Jadeja hasn’t picked any wicket in the first two games. However, it hasn’t hurt India much. Hence, if Jadeja’s inability to take wickets is not impairing India, where do you will play Ashwin,” he added.

It has to be noted that Ashwin has been in fine form for India in the longest format. Earlier this year, in fact, he became the second-fastest bowler to take 400 Test wickets. Hence, his absence from the playing XI unsurprisingly raised a lot of questions. However, Indian bowlers did well in the first two games and are likely to continue with their four-man pace attack. Hence, it would be interesting to see whether Ashwin gets a game or not.