Indian player says he's set to retire after 2023 World Cup
Veteran India star, who came in as a last-minute replacement to India's ODI World Cup squad has hinted at his retirement timeline. The player has acknowledged that this World Cup might mark his final appearance, ahead of the IND vs ENG World Cup Warm-up clash in Guwahati.
Given the rise of young spinners, it appears highly unlikely that Ashwin will feature in the T20 World Cup scheduled for June next year.
Despite having played merely five ODIs in the past six years, Ashwin secured a spot in the World Cup squad due to Axar Patel's injury. Nonetheless, at 37, and with another off-spinner, Washington Sundar, in the wings, Ashwin will primarily focus on Test cricket until the 2025 World Test Championship final.
In the realm of T20s, despite Ashwin's noteworthy performances in the IPL, India's emphasis has shifted towards all-rounders over specialists.
Ravichandran Ashwin reveals key factor for India's success at the 2023 ODI World Cup
Tilak Varma has emerged as a promising option, as he not only provides off-spin but also contributes as a top-order batsman. Additionally, Washington Sundar is proficient in bowling off-spin. Consequently, Ashwin's role has gradually diminished.
“I would have said that you were joking. Life is full of surprises. Honestly did not think I would be here. Circumstances have made sure I am here today. The team management has shown trust. Dealing with pressure is paramount in these tournaments and it will dictate how the tournament goes. Being in a good space, enjoying this tournament will keep me in good stead. This could be my last World Cup for India, so enjoying the tournament is of utmost importance,” Ravichandran Ashwin told Dinesh Karthik in a pre-match interview.
Rohit Sharma and Co begin their final round of World Cup preparations with two warm-up matches. The first encounter takes place against England in Guwahati, followed by a match against the Netherlands in Thiruvananthapuram. The Men in Blue are set to commence their World Cup campaign against Australia in Chennai on October 8.