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Ravichandran Ashwin is best in Tests, feels former English spinner Graeme Swann

As per ICC rankings, Ashwin is ranked as the seventh best bowler and the fourth best all-rounder in Tests.

Graeme Swann
Graeme Swann. (Photo by Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images for Specsavers)

His place in the team was becoming increasingly uncertain with the arrival of young spinners. His ordinary performance overseas was also another reason why his effectiveness and impact even in the Test side were questioned. However, Ravichandran Ashwin has suddenly looked a key member of the current Indian team touring England and former players have poured in with compliments for the 31-year-old off-spinner.

After former Pakistani offie Saqlain Mushtaq praised Ashwin’s evolution into a “world class bowler”, former England spinner Graeme Swann has also hailed the Indian spinner, calling him the “best in Tests”. Swann, who is England’s most successful spinner in Tests with 255 scalps and also found a spot in his country’s all-time best XI ahead of their historic 1000th Test at Edgbaston, is doing commentary for the ongoing Test series.

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Loved the way Ashwin bowled in Edgbaston

He told Times of India in an exclusive chat: “Ashwin is easily the best off-spinner in the world, his record in sub-continent is phenomenal and I loved the way he bowled at Edgbaston. Australia’s Nathan Lyon has come up brilliantly and I am impressed by the fact that he has been successful back home. He hasn’t been as effective in England and I would keep Ashwin just ahead of him because of the variations that he has, in addition to being brilliantly consistent.”

Ashwin has 324 wickets in 61 Test matches and in this series, he has taken 8 wickets in three games so far with seven of them coming in the first Test at Edgbaston. In England, he has taken 11 wickets in 5 games so far with the best figure of 4 for 62. Away from home, Ashwin has 99 wickets in 25 matches so far at an average of 31.49 (his overall average is 25.45).

The former English off-break bowler, however, stopped short of calling Ashwin the best bowler in the world. “Yes he is the best in Test cricket but in T20s, you can’t look beyond Rashid Khan. He has a fast arm, great googly and is a brilliant story as well.”

As per ICC rankings, Ashwin is ranked as the seventh best bowler and the fourth best all-rounder in Tests.

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