Only when you play Test cricket, your first-class structure will get better: Ravi Ashwin
Earlier, Ravi Shastri had opined on reducing the number of Tests amidst the hectic international schedule and Ashwin responded to it.
Updated - Aug 5, 2022 2:16 pm
Former Indian head coach Ravi Shastri made a controversial statement on Test cricket by suggesting that the format should be restricted to only the top three or four nations in cricket. Veteran Indian off-spinner Ravi Ashwin disagreed with the former Indian skipper’s suggestions and stated his opinion on the necessity of Test cricket for all countries.
Ashwin is currently the leading wicket-taker for India in red-ball cricket among active players, and while he has been one of the stalwarts in India’s leading global T20 league, the IPL, he believes Test cricket is essential for the growth of T20 cricket. He reckoned that the first-class structure feeds on Test cricket and a nation can only improve in the shortest format of the game when players get more opportunities in FC cricket to mould their game for the T20 format.
“Recently Ravi Bhai said Test cricket should be made as a format that only 3-4 nations play. But when 3-4 nations play, teams like Ireland won’t get won’t get the opportunity to play. Only when you play Test cricket, your first-class structure will get better. And only when your first-class structure is good, people will get more opportunities. And players who do well in first-class cricket mold their game according to T20 cricket. That’s how cricket has shaped up,” Ashwin said on his YouTube channel.
If Test cricket is not relevant, they won’t play it with full interest: Ravi Ashwin
The Indian offie who made his return to the Indian T20I side after a hiatus of eight months has looked in prime touch in the Caribbean and spoke about the state of affairs in the Windies. He highlighted the lack of first-class cricket on the island nation as the country has shifted its focus from red-ball cricket to the shorter formats of the game and, as a result, has slumped in ODI and T20I cricket.
“How will you strengthen first-class cricket? For that Test cricket needs to be relevant in your country. If Test cricket is not relevant, they won’t play it with full interest. I’m currently in West Indies and here we can see that first-class cricket is almost gone. There are multiple T20 tournaments,” Ashwin added.