Ravichandran Ashwin has done it again. Just when you thought he was through with radical experiments, having finally cracked it that there is no substitute to sticking to the basics of off-spin bowling — which are control, flight, dip and turn — he went ahead and bowled leg spin during an extended session on match eve on Thursday.
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When he walked out under lights with a support staff member in tow, it looked like Ashwin was aiming to get used to bowling with dew around. He ambled in like an ungainly stick figure, but then leaned sideways and fired in a leg break, Shahid Afridi style. It drifted towards leg and spun considerably. Over the 45 minutes or so, he bowled these leg-breaks, flippers and top spinners.
There weren’t any googlies, which is a good sign. For it means he remembers he can always bowl an old-fashioned off break.
But it was enough to suggest he plans pull off a fast one against SA on Friday evening. It also begs the question what next for him after leg spin? Maybe he will actually run in and bowl a fast one.
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