Ravichandran Ashwin recently shed light on a disheartening aspect of Indian cricket in the aftermath of being overlooked for the World Test Championship (WTC) final against Australia. Despite being the top-ranked Test bowler and one of the top-10 wicket-takers in Test history, Ashwin’s exclusion came as a significant blow to the renowned spinner. In times of adversity, individuals often seek support from friends in the same profession, especially within the same team. However, Ashwin’s response unveiled a somber truth about the state of Indian cricket following the WTC final snub.
Ashwin was bypassed in favor of Umesh Yadav for the crucial final at The Oval last week, a decision that drew strong criticism from seasoned cricketers who expressed their discontent towards captain Rohit Sharma and head coach Rahul Dravid. This verdict had been under scrutiny ever since India suffered a 209-run defeat in their second consecutive WTC final.
During an interview with the Indian Express, Ashwin was asked if he sought help or engaged in open conversations with any of his teammates. His initial reaction was, “It’s a deep topic.” He elaborated that due to intense competition within the team for each position, the concept of friendship has taken a backseat in the Indian dressing room.
“This is an era where everybody is a colleague. Once upon a time when cricket was played, all your teammates were friends. Now, they’re colleagues. There’s a big difference because here people are there to advance themselves and to stride ahead of another person sitting to your right or left. So nobody’s got the time to say, ‘okay, boss what are you up to’?” he expressed.