R Ashwin set to be rested against Afghanistan, after discontinuing talks with Worcestershire

Ravi Ashwin IPL
Ravichandran Ashwin - Image Credit - Hindustan Times
  • Ravichandran Ashwin could be rested for the one-off test match against Afghanistan
  • He had earlier informed BCCI that he was available for selection and due to which he had cancelled talks with English county cricket teams
  • If rested Ashwin is likely to miss out on key red ball cricket before the all-important test series against England in England

Ever since Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja lost their place in the limited-over Indian side, their focus has been firmly on test cricket and over the last few months, the duo has become a key pairing for India in test cricket. However, if latest reports are to be believed it looks like the Kings XI Punjab captain could miss out on some key red ball cricket prior to the all-important test series against England. R Ashwin IPL has been going brilliantly especially now that he is the captain of the side which is looking stronger than it has ever looked in the past 10 years.

Ravichandran Ashwin in a tough situation after a miscommunication with the BCCI

Prior to the start of the IPL, Ravichandran Ashwin had confirmed to the selectors that he would be available for selection for the one-off test match against Afghanistan in June and had subsequently ended his talks with English club Worcestershire, who were keen to get him for the initial part of the domestic season but after Ashwin’s refusal, they have now gone ahead and signed Travis Head. The selectors will be meeting on Tuesday (May 8th) to decide the squad to face Afghanistan in one test match, along with that they will also announce the squad for two T20Is in Ireland, the limited-overs leg of the England tour, and A team tour of England.

It is believed that the BCCI had spoken to a group of senior players asking them their preference for how they wanted to prepare for the English test series. Players like Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara had opted to play in the English county league and had withdrawn their name for national selection. However, Ravichandran Ashwin was among the few players who had expressed his desire to play in that one-off test match against Rashid Khan’s Afghanistan. But now with Ashwin almost certain to be rested for that historic test match in Bengaluru, he will struggle to find a perfect platform to get in his rhythm before India starts the test series against England in August.

Not the first time BCCI has failed to communicate clearly to its players

If the communications channels with the board were clearer, Ashwin could have easily opted for the stint in county cricket like his Indian captain Virat Kohli, who has signed for Surrey in order to get used to English conditions. If Ashwin is indeed rested for the Afghanistan test match, his only chance of red ball cricket before mid-August will be two India A four-day games against West Indies A in June in England.

This is not the first time miscommunication between the board and the players have occurred. Last year, When Jadeja and Ashwin were dropped for the limited-over series against Sri Lanka, the board informed the media that the duo had been rested in order to give a chance to the youngsters. Ashwin was given a NOC by the BCCI allowing him to play 2 test matches in England, as he was told he would be recalled back in the squad for the Australian ODI series later in the year. However, with Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav doing so well against Sri Lanka, BCCI persisted with them, leaving Ashwin again in a jeopardy.

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