Ravichandran Ashwin is someone who tries to mix things up as a spinner. He has so many variations up his sleeve that it becomes difficult for a batsman to figure out what he's going to get. It could be a regular leg spinner, an off spinner, a googly, a carrom ball, a 'doosra' and if that was not enough, 'Ash' doesn't hesitate in testing the laws of the sport - as witnessed in the Indian Premier League and the 'Mankading' of Jos Buttler. The incident created quite the controversy but Ashwin stuck to his guns with many finding it to be unsporting and deceiving.
Another such incident transpired in the Tamil Nadu Premier League on Monday (22 July). Conventionally, a bowler would take his front arm up before pulling it down and rotate his bowling arm before releasing the ball. But that's conventional cricket. There have been many over the years who have displayed their art in unorthodox actions: South Africa's Paul Adams, Pakistan's Sohail Tanveer, India's Jasprit Bumrah and Sri Lanka's Lasith Malinga and Muttiah Muralitharan have all had unique bowling styles.
My experiments with the ball - Ft. @ashwinravi99!
— TNPL (@TNPremierLeague) July 23, 2019
During the TNPL, Ashwin, playing for Dindigul Dragons, bowled a delivery without using his front arm. It eventually was a tossed up delivery with little to bother the batsman but ended up fetching him a wicket.
Ashwin keeps the ball behind his back till the very last moment, then while keeping his left hand almost motionless, he throws the ball forward with no spin on it. The exaggerated flight leaves the batsman completely flummoxed, as he finds the fielder at long on.
The Dragons spinner was defending 32 runs in the final over and did so successfully by conceding just two runs and taking two wickets. Dindigul Dragons won the match by 30 runs for their second successive win this season.
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"If not the best, Delhi's bowling attack is one of the best," Rishabh Pant said at the post-match presentation.
With the win, the Capitals returned to the top of the table while the Royals moved down to the sixth spot.
At best of times, IPL is a relentless examination of players’ skills, temperament, and fitness. In times of bubble fatigue and the looming COVID threat, the test becomes unforgiving. Add to it the impending World Cup, and IPL 2021 becomes a true box office material.