Ashwin mulls ‘one-sided’ ploy against big-hitters


PERTH: Restricting scoring to any one side of the wicket could be an effective ploy to tame big-hitting batsmen like Chris Gayle and AB de Villiers at the World Cup, Indian off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin said on Thursday.

Three 400-plus totals have already been registered in the 14-team tournament and West Indies opener Chris Gayle has struck World Cup’s first double century against Zimbabwe.

Batsmen such as South Africa captain de Villiers and Australian Glenn Maxwell have capitalised on field restrictions and made mockery of field settings with 360-degree strokeplay in a skewed contest between the bat and ball.

Ashwin, however, was looking forward to the challenge of bowling to Gayle in Friday’s Pool B match at Perth.

“You’ve got to restrict hitting to one side of the ground… and try to see how much you can restrict the hitting to that side,” Ashwin told reporters at the WACA.

“It’s pretty much about boundaries and wickets, and you can restrict the hitting to one side and see if you can get a wicket or two,” added India’s most successful bowler in the tournament so far with eight wickets.

West Indies captain Jason Holder would naturally like to see Gayle punish India on Friday but as a bowler he too has suffered at de Villiers’ hand, bleeding 104 runs in his 10 overs in the 257-run defeat last week.

Like Ashwin, Holder too advocated forcing the swasbuckling batsmen into hitting to one side only.

“I think we have to limit batsmen’s scoring on one side. You know, you have to just in a sense narrow down your options just to one or two things and try not to cater to too many things,” Holder said.

“I think the more we actually spend pondering on the actual field and fielding restrictions, it makes life a little more difficult in a sense.” Reuters