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R Ashwin has ‘no expectations’ from Sunil Gavaskar’s 100th Test request to Rohit Sharma: ‘I hope he allows you to…’

Sunil Gavaskar wants to see Rohit Sharma making Ravichandran Ashwin lead the team in Dharamsala but the India spinner has ‘no expectations’.

With 99 matches, 507 wickets, 35 five-wicket-hauls, 24 four-fors, over 3000 runs and five centuries, Ravichandran Ashwin’s Test career has been nothing less than iconic. A bonafide legend, Ashwin has been part of Indian cricketing folklore for over 13 years and is involved in some of their most cherished moments. Be it reaching the pinnacle of the ICC Test rankings, playing two World Test Championship finals, or beating Australia in Australia twice, Ashwin has been part of it all.

India’s Ravichandran Ashwin and captain Rohit Sharma have a discussion. (AFP)

And now… in 10 days, Ashwin will take his already legendary career to the next step as he gets set to become only the 14th Indian cricketer to play 100 Tests. Yes, Ashwin, a 99-Test veteran, will enter the 100-Test club when he takes the field on March 7, joining his peers Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ishant Sharma in this rare prestigious list.

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Ashwin, a true giant of the game and an ever-so-dedicated servant of Indian cricket, continues to win hearts as despite leading India’s stellar outing with the ball against England on Day 3 in Ranchi, he had nothing but encouraging words for his spin-bowling partner Kuldeep Yadav. But as the question drifted back to Ashwin, the legendary Sunil Gavaskar made a special request to Rohit Sharma for the next game in Dharamsala.

“India win tomorrow and you go to Dharamsala. I just hope that Rohit allows you to lead the team out to the field when. That will be a wonderful gesture, wonderful honour for all that you’ve done for Indian cricket,” Gavaskar said after stumps on Day 3.

This isn’t the first time the Indian legend has expressed his desire to see Ashwin captaining the team. During his 13-year-long career, Ashwin has donned many hats but captaincy wasn’t one of them. And given how the leadership role works in Indian cricket, it wouldn’t have been possible any which way. Virat Kohli was India’s full-time captain for almost 7 years, and after he decided to step down, the baton passed to Rohit Sharma because split captaincy in the country is still frowned upon by many.

Ashwin’s gem of a reply

Gavaskar recently expressed that two years ago, Ashwin should have been honoured with India’s Test captaincy, but since it didn’t materialise, the India great believes Ashwin should be captaining the side at the HPCA Stadium. And truth be told… with the series likely to be sealed in a few hours’ time, why not.

Ashwin however, decided to focus on the job at hand and said that he has zero expectations from it. All he wants to do is keep using his bag of tricks to fox, outthink, outsmart the batter and enjoy it for as long as he can.

“Sunny bhai, you’re being too generous. Thank you so much. I have no expectations out of all these things. I think I’m well past all that but genuinely saying I’m enjoying every single moment that I am being with this team and the longer it lasts, I will be very happy,” responded Ashwin.


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