Australian batter Marnus Labuschagne praised Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin and said he enjoys his duels with the veteran cricketer. Reflecting on his battles with the 34-year-old during the 2020-21 Border-Gavaskar series, Labuschagne, who is currently the No. 1 Test batter in the world, noted Ashwin’s ability to judge the batter, adding that playing against him “felt like a chess game”. “He’s very good at judging batsmen and that’s why I enjoyed competing against him,” Labuschagne told Sportstar in an interview.
“What I liked most about Ashwin was the fields he had in front of me and how I tried to move the field in my attempt to score points. Exactly the way we were both able to chop and turn into the in the middle of a compelling passage. It almost felt like a game of chess. He threw beautifully in Melbourne…got some early wickets with the leg slip,” he added.
Ashwin was one of the top performers for Team India in Australia’s four-match Test series, taking 12 wickets in three games as India won their second consecutive Test series Down Under.
With Australia touring India in 2023 to play 4 Tests, three ODIs and as many T20Is, Labuschagne and the other batters are likely to struggle in the spider-friendly conditions.
But as Australia will be making some subcontinental trips later this year, including to Pakistan, Labuschagne is hopeful that he will be able to test himself and pull a few tricks out of his bag as well.
“We have a few subcontinent tours for my next trip to India, and hopefully I can challenge myself in those circumstances. I have a few tricks up my sleeve,” he said.
Australia is touring Pakistan for the first time in 24 years. Both teams will play three Tests, three ODIs and a one-off T20I from next month.
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