Ashwin and fellow spinner Washington Sundar have been included in the squad for the three-match ODI series against Australia.
After India’s crushing defeat against Australia, several fans took to Twitter to vent their ire. They compared Team India as the new South African team who are known as perennial chokers in ICC tournaments.
Australian pacer Scott Boland produced a bowling spell of rare quality to get rid of Virat Kohli and Ravindra Jadeja in the same over, effectively shutting the door on India, who were bowled out for 234 in their second innings on the final day at The Oval.
Well, Indian fans have a hate relationship with Kettleborough for a long time. They feel that Kettleborough has always been proved as a bad omen for the Men in Blue.
Despits having a useful partnership of 109 with Rahane, Thakur called the Oval pitch ‘underprepared’.
Their potent bowling unit used the fuller deliveries and bounce in the pitch to good effect to leave India on 151/5 in 38 overs at stumps, with Australia still leading by 318 runs. All of Australia's five bowlers took a wicket as India's top four batters failed to pass the 15 run mark.
When he got out for 121 after chopping on to his stumps off Shardul Thakur, Smith enhanced his excellent record at The Oval, now managing to score three Test tons at the venue. Only the great Sachin Tendulkar (11) has scored more Test hundreds in matches between India and Australia.
Travis Head and Steve Smith were batting on 146 and 95 respectively at close of play on Day 1 as Australia added 157 runs in the final session which had 34 overs without losing any wicket. The duo added 251 runs for the unbroken fourth wicket stand.
The high-octane encounter also offers both the teams an opportunity to break multiple records. Let’s have a look at the top five milestones that has been reached or could be achieved during the marquee game.
Undoubtedly, India's team has been the most consistent one over the past two WTC cycles.
As per the International Cricket Council (ICC), Hazlewood has been ruled out of the marquee match due to his ongoing left Achilles and left side issue. Neser, who has played two Tests and as many ODIs for Australia, has been brought in for the WTC Final squad after his inclusion was approved by the Event Technical Committee.
Electing to bat first, Australia seemed to have read the conditions well by maximising the powerplay. But despite getting into double figures barring Steve Smith falling for a two-ball duck, none of the batters could make a big score.
Starc, who had picked a three-fer in the first ODI in Mumbai, produced yet another stunning exhibition of early swing bowling to scythe through the top order and then took out Mohammed Siraj to finish with 5-53. Sean Abbott was excellent in his 3-23 while Nathan Ellis provided great support through 2-13.
Starc, who had picked a three-fer in the first ODI in Mumbai, produced yet another stunning exhibition of early swing bowling to scythe through the top order and then took out Mohammed Siraj to finish with 5/53.
With more than an hour left on the clock for the game to end, both teams called for the match to end, as it reached the inevitable result of draw, as India pocketed their 16th consecutive series win at home. Also, it is the fourth straight series between India and Australia that has ended at 2-1 scoreline.
If Shubman Gill was the talk of the town with his sparkling 128 on Saturday, it was Kohli's turn to be in the spotlight on Sunday to break his drought of Test century which lasted 1025 days through his determined 364-ball stay at the crease, hitting 15 boundaries and enthralling a sizeable Sunday crowd.
ESPN took to Twitter and wrote, “The wait is over, the drought has ended. Virat Kohli has his first Test century since November 2019. #INDvAUS.”
On a pitch which still hasn't shown signs of a sharp turn, Ashwin single-handedly got India back in the match. After picking three wickets in the second session, Ashwin took three more to get his six-fer and wrap Australia's innings at 167.2 overs.
The high-voltage final match will be played in Cape Town on Sunday.
Meanwhile, India thrashed Australia to secure a thumping win by an innings and 132 runs in the first test at Nagpur.