Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin has admitted that he felt “crushed” when former head coach Ravi Shastri lavished praise on Kuldeep Yadav following a brilliant run during the Australia series.
I hold Ravi bhai in high esteem. We all do. And I understand we all can say things and then retract them. At that moment, though, I felt crushed. Absolutely crushed."
Kuldeep had bagged a five-wicket haul in the Sydney Test in 2019 and Shastri had termed the leg spinner as “India's No. 1 overseas spinner”. While the game ended in a draw, India won the series Down Under.
“I hold Ravi bhai in high esteem. We all do. And I understand we all can say things and then retract them. At that moment, though, I felt crushed. Absolutely crushed. We all talk about how important it is to enjoy your teammates' success,” ESPNcricinfo quoted Ashwin as saying.
“And I was happy for Kuldeep. I have not been able to get a five-for but he has a five-for in Australia. I know how big it is. Even when I have bowled well (at other times), I haven't ended up with a five-for. So I am genuinely happy for him. And it’s an extremely happy occasion, to win in Australia,” he added.
The Indian off-spinner said he felt as if he was thrown under the bus and was feeling left out from the team’s success party following the series win against Australia.
“But if I have to come and partake in his happiness, and the success of the team, I must feel like I belong there. If I feel like I am being thrown under the bus, how am I supposed to get up and come for a party to enjoy the team’s or teammate's success? I went back to my room and then I spoke to my wife,” said Ashwin.
“And my children were there. So we were able to, you know, shrug it off, and I still made it to the party, because, end of the day, we had won a massive series,” he added.
Ashwin will now be seen in action when South Africa and India lock horns in the three-match Test series, beginning on December 26.
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