'Ashwin should focus on off-spin'

The build-up to India’s four-match Test series against England has been dominated by the talk about India letting loose their spinners on England to exploit the visitors’ weakness against top-shelf spin.

Offie R Ashwin contributed to the hugger-mugger, stating that he was all set to use a mystery delivery against the Englishmen. The Chennai lad was also seen trying some variations at nets on Wednesday, and it was an exciting prospect for those who watched the privations of England batsmen against Pakistan off-spinner Saeed Ajmal at UAE some months back. However, Indian skipper MS Dhoni didn’t join the bandwagon, advising Ashwin to concentrate more on traditional off-spin.

Dhoni began with the futility of comparing Ashwin with Ajmal. “I feel they are different bowlers. It is unfair to compare two different bowlers. Ajmal has got a brilliant doosra, and he is someone who generates a lot of pace with the ball that goes away from the right-hand batsman.”

The skipper then detailed the modus operandi of Chennai offie, before suggesting a way forward for him. “Ashwin can bowl almost each and every delivery that anyone can bowl. He has got the flipper, the googly, bowls leg-spin, off-spin, the carom-ball. it’s important we treat him that way. Still the majority of his deliveries are off-spin.

“So, it’s important for him to concentrate on the stock delivery and use the variations sparingly. I feel he has done that really well so far. With experience he will only get better.”

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