R Ashwin didn't get consolation for not getting picked in England, selection doesn't happen this way: Saba Karim

R Ashwin didn’t get consolation for not getting picked in England, selection doesn’t happen this way: Saba Karim

Karim feels that the vacant spot created by Washington Sundar's injury was best filled by R Ashwin thanks to his T20 skillsets.

Saba Karim and Ravi Ashwin
Saba Karim and Ravi Ashwin. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

Former India player Saba Karim has disagreed with the claims of Ravichandran Ashwin’s T20 World Cup 2021 selection being a consolation for not getting a chance to play in England Tests. Notably, Ashwin was not selected for even a single one of the four Tests in the Pataudi Trophy, while the fifth and final clash in Manchester was cancelled in the wake of Covid-19 cases in the visiting camp.

“No, I don’t think Ashwin has got a consolation for not getting picked in England Tests. Selection doesn’t happen this way,” Karim told Sports Tak.

He reasoned that Washington Sundar’s injury had created a vacant spot in the team, and Ashwin was the best off-spin choice given his T20 skillsets. “Washington Sundar got injured and the only off-spinning option after him was Ravi Ashwin. Jalaj Saxena and Jayant Saxena were two other options but they can’t be battling with Ashwin thanks to his economy and wicket-taking ability in the T20s.

On being quizzed about whether Ashwin will be included in the team or not, Karim stated it his inclusion would be subjected to who India is up against. “I think Ashwin will make it to the playing XI. But it will all depend on the opposition India is playing as well. It will be a great combination of three different spinners in the XI if he plays.”

Besides Ashwin, India’s spin column includes Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel and Rahul Chahar, while Yuzvendra Chahal has not been named in the squad.

Saba Karim reveals his T20 World Cup title contenders 

Karim also revealed his choice for the top four teams while naming Rishabh Pant as India’s X-factor player for the multi-team tournament.

“I think it is West Indies, India, England and a toss-up between South Africa and New Zealand. West Indies have won the World Cup twice but because the tournament is played in the UAE, I will place my bet on India. I think Rishabh Pant will be the X-factor for India. I wish the performances that he has given in Test cricket, he can replicate those in T20 too”, Saba Karim stated.