IND vs AUS 2022-23: Matt Renshaw reveals how Australia can tackle the Ravichandran Ashwin problem
IND vs AUS 2022-23: As Australia travels to India for four Tests for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, it would be wary of the Ravichandran Ashwin challenge. However, Matt Renshaw has revealed how to tackle the problem.
Australian batter Matt Renshaw has disclosed that veteran off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin will be one of the most challenging bowlers to face in the four-Test series in India, commencing on February 9. With the Border-Gavaskar Trophy series beginning in Nagpur, a lot of focus is on how Pat Cummins-led Australia will face the Indian offie, who made history in 2021 by becoming the first to take 200 wickets of left-handers. With Australia's batting line-up packed with lefties, including David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Travis Head, wicketkeeper Alex Carey and Renshaw himself, Ashwin could be more than a handful for the visitors during the high-profile series.
"Ashwin is difficult to face. He is a smart bowler with many variations and uses them very well, but you get used to him once you've faced him for a while. I think the big challenge from Ashwin and any off-spinner in spinning conditions to a left-hander is the lbw threat," Renshaw, 26, told Australian Associated Press on Wednesday.
Renshaw pointed out that Australia should be careful of Ashwin's delivery, which doesn't spin and has caused a lot of leg-before dismissals. "Everyone thinks about the one that turns and gets you caught at slip, but the big one is the lbw when it doesn't spin. You have to be ready for that one. Two years of batting at No.5 helped me with facing spin. I know my game better now, and I am a lot more comfortable in different situations," he added.
Renshaw was a member of the Australian side that toured India in 2017 and opened the innings in all but one innings of the four Tests. In the opening Test at Pune, Ashwin dismissed him once, but only after Renshaw had scored a 50. The Australian, who is likely to come in at fifth if given a chance in the XI on the forthcoming tour, was sure his side would be decisive contenders.
"We have a strong squad, and it is going to be hard to push my way in, but I know I will be ready if I get a chance," he conveyed. Renshaw declared that his Big Bash League (BBL) stint with Brisbane Heat has helped him prepare for the series, as the side was packed with spinners.
Heat have the likes of leg-spinner Mitchell Swepson, Matthew Kuhnemann and Marnus Labuschagne, and Renshaw communicated that he has been preparing for the India series with SG balls. "The SG ball is a bit different, so we are just trying to prepare as well as we can during this BBL schedule if we get a window to hit red balls," sounded Renshaw.
"It is a lot of different conditions in India, so we are trying to replicate them as much as possible. The plan was if [the Heat] got knocked out, we'd do some prep with the [Australian] team in Sydney, but we just kept winning and are in the [BBL] finals now. We have a good week and a bit in India before the first Test, so there will be plenty of time to prepare there as well," Renshaw concluded.
(With inputs from PTI)