We would like to take advantage of Steve Smith’s rustiness: Ravi Ashwin
While he lauded Smith's versatility as a batsman, Ashwin also mentioned that making a comeback wouldn't be easy
Updated - Mar 24, 2019 8:40 pm
The Indian Premier League (IPL) commenced on Saturday at the Chepauk as the defending champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) demolished the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). The Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) will be starting their campaign on Monday as they take on the Rajasthan Royals (RR). However, the match will be special from another point of view.
Steve Smith is expected to make a comeback into the tournament after missing out last year. The Australian batsman will be keen to establish his authority in the Royals batting order. He led the Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) to the finals of IPL 2017. While Ajinkya Rahane will be leading the side, his insights would undoubtedly be valuable.
He is a quality player
Ahead of the clash against Rajasthan, skipper Ravi Ashwin lauded Smith’s versatility as a batsman. He stated that the Aussie player would have prepared himself better for the challenge. However, at the same time, he mentioned that making a comeback wouldn’t be easy.
“We all know he is a quality player and must have worked and prepared hard during the break but comebacks are not easy. He must have put a lot of efforts for a comeback mentally. I am sure he would look to perform and on the other hand, we would look to take advantage of his rustiness,” he said in the pre-match press conference.
Chris Gayle is an asset on the field
Meanwhile, Chris Gayle is back to show his class in the IPL and has displayed some phenomenal form playing for the Windies. While he might be ageing now, Ravi Ashwin stills finds him a reliable asset in the side. His experience is likely to be helpful to the youngsters in the side. Chris Gayle also registered 39 sixes in the five match series as he made a new world record.
“The way he batted in the last series against quality bowlers and took on the spinners shows that he still is a formidable force. He is an asset on the field and in the dressing room where he helps youngsters groom,” the KXIP skipper further said.