Ashwin becomes India’s third-highest wicket-taker in Tests, Bhajji congratulates him

Ravichandran Ashwin
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Kanpur– Senior off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin on Monday moved past Harbhajan Singh’s tally of 417 wickets, becoming India’s third-highest wicket-keeper in Test cricket. Former India spinner Harbhajan Singh congratulated Ashwin for his achievement on Monday.

The 35-year-old had equalled Harbhajan’s tally of 417 wickets on Sunday after he dismissed Will Young on Day 4. Ashwin dismissed Tom Latham in the second innings of New Zealand at the Green Park to go past Harbhajan’s tally of 417 wickets in Tests. In the first innings of the Kanpur Test, Ashwin had taken three wickets while Axar Patel took five. Ashwin has so far taken 30 five-wicket hauls in his career.

Ashwin is now behind Anil Kumble (619) and Kapil Dev (434) in India’s all-time list of highest Test wicket-takers.

Ashwin is the fourth Indian bowler to take more than 400 wickets. Monday’s achievement made him the 13th highest wicket-taker in Tests of all time, moving past Pakistan’s Wasim Akram (414). He is the third-highest wicket-taker in Tests among active cricketers, after English pace duo Stuart Broad and James Anderson, who have 524 and 632 wickets respectively.

Ashwin, who made his Test debut in November 2011 against the West Indies in Delhi, has claimed his wickets at a strike rate of 52.4 and an average of 24.5.

Asked about his achievement, Ashwin said it was only a milestone and he did not feel much about passing Harbhajan.

“(I feel) Absolutely nothing at all to be honest. I Know these are milestones that are constantly kept on the tab and it’s wonderful. Maybe, Rahul Bhai, ever since he has taken over, has kept saying the same thing. ‘How many ever wickets you take, how many ever runs you score in 10 years, won’t matter, its the memories that matter’. So, I want to have some really special moments going forward in the next 3-4 years,” said Ashwin after the match.

He may not consider that very important but Harbhajan took to Twitter on Monday to congratulate him on the achievement.

“Congratulations @ashwinravi99 wish you many more brother.. God bless. keep shining,” Harbhajan wrote in a tweet on Monday.

After Ashwin’s superb performances with both bat and ball, wicket-keeper batsman Dinesh Karthik has in a cricket show on Cricbuzz compared him to legendary Kapil Dev.

“Obviously, I don’t think I am in a place to judge both of them, but I must admit that they should be spoken of in the same breath when it comes to Indian cricket because both of them have been match-winners, have been exemplary, and have been definitely the two best all-rounders to have come out of this soil for a long, long time,” Karthik said during a discussion with Simon Doull on Cricbuzz.

“You have to put him there (among India’s best all-rounders) with the number of Man of the Series he has won, the accolades he has got obviously. Getting 417 wickets in 80 Tests is an unbelievable record to have and the fact that he’s contributed and scored five hundred, much more than a lot of the batters who play for a longer period of time in Test matches. There are people who have played 30-35 Tests, and still haven’t managed five hundred,” Karthik added. (IANS)


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