Ashwin 1-wicket on from Muralitharan’s World Record: India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin built a remarkable improvement to world cricket after a break of almost nine months. Ashwin struck up seven wickets to bowl South Africa out for 431 and keep India’s nose in appearance despite excellent counter.
He is attacking centuries from South African left-handers Dean Elgar and Quinton de Kock in leading India vs South Africa Test match. Ashwin, who got his 27th five-wicket haul on Friday, got the remaining two wickets to cover up the innings in the morning session on Day 4 in Visakhapatnam.
With that, the Indian off-spinner got himself on the doorsteps of a vast record. Ashwin is presently just one wicket away from reaching Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan’s world record of doing the quickest to 350 Test wickets.
Ashwin, who has 349-wickets to his name, needs to pick up one more wicket in this match to equal Murali’s world record. The Sri Lankan turn wizard also is the all-time most leading wicket-taker in Test matches with 800 scalps to his credit.
Murali had reached the milestone in his 66th Test match back in 2001 upon Bangladesh.
Ashwin also is making his 66th appearance in the most straightforward format of the game.
Ashwin got overnight batsman Keshav Maharaj left for nine and then confined Kagiso Rabada for 15 as the Proteas granted a 71-run lead in reply to India’s 502 for seven declared.
With the second innings on a fifth-day track remaining, Ashwin will likely equal Muralitharan’s record. Ashwin has the chance of hitting Murali in the duration of balls bowled to go to 350 Test scalps. Ashwin 1-wicket on from Muralitharan’s World Record.
Murali had received 3605.2 overs to take 250 Test wickets. Ashwin, on the other hand, has only bowled 3108.2 overs so far. The Sri Lanka legend, however, has the edge over Ashwin in all other features of bowling – average, market and runs conceded.
To put his Ashwin’s performance into perspective, he is set to beat Anil Kumble as India’s quickest to 350 Test scalps by 11 Tests. Kumble had taken 77 Tests to reach to that milestone.
The 33-year-old, who has been working only one format for India since July 2017, last performed the Adelaide Test from December 6 to 10, the 1st of the four on the tour of Australia.
To his frustration, Ashwin did not highlight in the playing eleven in the next Test series upon the West Indies in August-September when India only worked one spinner in Ravindra Jadeja. “To stay on from cricket itself was very difficult for me. To substitute, I played whatever games I got. I worked and made an opportunity for myself to go and play some county cricket (for Nottinghamshire). I tried and performed the TNPL as much as I could, played some league cricket in Chennai,” he said.
“It was imperative to tick those numbers off because that is essentially where I came from. Going back and playing there is the best thing that could have happened,” said Ashwin, who when asked about time away from national duty.