Indian spin ace Ravichandran Ashwin is probably the best modern spinner the country has produced. The Tamil Nadu tweaker has been the one to never shy away from experimentation and this has resulted in him having many arrows in his quiver to bamboozle the opposition batsmen and pick wickets on any sort of wicket and under any conditions.
Ashwin, who will be seen in action against New Zealand in the Test series shortly, has 362 wickets in 70 Tests at an average of 25.36 and a strike rate of 53.6. Ashwin has developed some brilliant variations to his stock off-spinners and has been seen bowling leg-spin and seam up deliveries in matches often. He has gone as far as bowling with his left hand in nets as well.
However, one variation that Ashwin mastered completely was the carrom ball, a delivery that is bowled by flicking the finger from behind the ball. It is a difficult ball to learn and then master. But it seems Ashwin had a pretty good teacher who taught him this ball and in a recent interview, Ashwin revealed the name of the master who gave him this gift of carrom ball.
‘He made me look like an absolute idiot’: Ravichandran Ashwin
Ashwin, in an interview with Cricbuzz.com, revealed that he learned the art of carrom ball from a guy who he met while playing tennis ball cricket back in Tamil Nadu.
“The first time I went to play a tennis ball game, I was batting. There was this guy who was bowling with proper action, getting beautiful drift and getting the ball to go nicely out and in. Till today I can’t find where the guy is but I haven’t seen a better bowler who can bowl both in and out than him in my life. His name is SK. He was the one from whom I learnt that ball,” Ashwin was quoted as saying.
The tweaker further revealed that the bowler made him look like an absolute idiot, as he was known to be a very good batsman in tennis cricket. “I was a big thing around the tennis ball circuit as a batsman then, so I said I need to learn from this guy. So, I used to go every morning, and he used to come and teach me for about 10-15 days,” he added.