Chennai v Bangalore, IPL 2011, Final, Chennai May 30, 2011

No pace to Gayle was key - Ashwin

ESPNcricinfo staff
28

R Ashwin, who took three wickets for Chennai Super Kings in the IPL final, said taking pace off the ball was the key to dismissing Chris Gayle in the first over of Royal Challengers Bangalore's chase.

"He [Gayle] has been batting really well this year and has been extremely selective in his strokes, which to me was the real difference," Ashwin told the Hindustan Times. "My plan was not to give him any pace as everybody knows what Gayle can do with it. Lack of pace meant that he had to use his feet and mind."

Gayle was the leading run-getter in this IPL and single-handedly transformed Bangalore's fortunes in the tournament. But Ashwin, who had dismissed Gayle for eight in the first qualifier in Mumbai, said that he was always confident of getting him out. "You can't plan against someone like Gayle. If you think too much about him, you can get defensive. I was confident that I can get him and I did.

"I knew he won't step out to me at all. I had in mind that at Wankhede he had pulled me for a six. The plan was made in Bangalore that I'd spin a few past him and then slip in an arm ball to get him out lbw or bowled. But on Saturday it spun and bounced and I think Gayle was a little late for his shot."

Ashwin, who was often used used by his Chennai captain MS Dhoni, to bowl with the new ball, admitted he "liked" bowling early on in the match. "I like bowling with a new ball. Secondly, I bowl in the nets with it as well. I just like the feel of it, the seam and lacquer helps it to skid off the wicket."

Ashwin ended the tournament as the highest wicket-taker for Chennai with 20 wickets and said that having Dhoni as a wicketkeeper had helped his bowling. "I rely a lot on the bounce, therefore a good wicketkeeper is extremely crucial," he said. "With Dhoni, the caught-behinds and stumpings have gone up many notches in my bowling. He understands the trajectory, the variation and the bounce that I get."

Chennai's victory, however, was set up by their batsmen, with a 159-run opening stand between M Vijay and Michael Hussey propelling them towards a total of 205. Vijay, who was declared Man of the Match for his 95 off 52 balls, said that his focus had been to ensure he picked up as many singles as possible. "I was missing a lot of singles in the previous matches," he said. "I was getting starts but not carrying on. So I worked consciously on running better, helping Hussey get the singles and rotating the strike."

Vijay said that the fact that Chennai had retained the nucleus of the side in the 2011 auction helped in the team's success. "There are a lot of known faces around since Chennai retained four players and bought back the core group of the squad during the auction, " Vijay told the Indian express. "Everyone knows what is expected and knows each others' game well. It has helped that MS Dhoni and Stephen Fleming have been working together for a while. The sense of familiarity has put players in a comfort zone and brings the best out of them."

"There are a lot of quality players in this squad, those who have played Tests and ODIs for their countries. Since they are international stars they know what needs to be done to ensure that the winning momentum is carried forward from one game to another. "

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • ViruLaxman on May 31, 2011, 18:15 GMT

    Ashwin is the best spinner currently in India. As they say, form is transitory but class is permanent, Ashwin is definitely one of the first-class bowlers who would give the batsmen a run for their money on any day in any pitch. He's not a flash in the pan like Amit Mishra or Pragyan Ojha or Ajantha Mendis. He is a mentally tough guy and a thinking bowler, much like Muthaiah Muralitharan. Please dont compare him with Bhajji( who is another good bowler) who needs adrenalin rush(aussies/critics) to perform well.

  • vind_2801 on May 31, 2011, 17:24 GMT

    @maja2834....still a.mendis is in srilankan main squad only ...pls follow cricket before commenting ....

  • vind_2801 on May 31, 2011, 16:40 GMT

    bhaji is a spinner who is totally out of form .....bhaiji is using name of sachin to stay in team ....c his recent comments everything in praise of sachin only...bhaji shld return to nca and improve his performance like shewag or yuvi ....ashwin is current best spinner for india ....ppl like rahul sharma shld also be groomed properly ...so that their talent is not wasted ...bhaji shld give way to others ...ashwin commitment to team and franchise was also one reason he performed .....sure he will give the same commitment to India as well ...ashwin has always a taken a wicket after he was hit for six ....this shows his ability to stay calm and come back strongly ...ashwin has never lost his nerves like bhaji usually does ......but lets c how he does in the Caribbean

  • on May 31, 2011, 15:03 GMT

    Brothers look at statistic guru.. chennai had 8 Mom's but Ashwin not in them not even badhri... Just look at what a team with 10 out of 11 match winners .... because of unity ...

  • maddy1986 on May 31, 2011, 13:31 GMT

    see harbahajan is not in a prime form then why dont we try ashwin here some persons talk about that ashwin is like mendis its not really true he is using his mind like warne he is not a natural bowler like murali or mendis but the bowler like warne

  • arvindhsuperking on May 31, 2011, 10:19 GMT

    Its too early to compare ashwin with baaji...but ashwin cannot be compared with mendis as mendis can be tackled by playing back foot shots but ashwin cant be tackled easily like that..

  • on May 31, 2011, 8:12 GMT

    Harbajan is a good test bowler... but he should be omitted in limited overs cricket... ashwin is so good in it with so many variations...

    i have no hatred towards bhaji... but the last few years.. he was doing so poor in limited overs cricket... even in world cup.. he was so poor..

  • on May 31, 2011, 5:12 GMT

    one thing everybody should understand... Ashwin bowls 3 powerplay overs and have an economy rate of 6... on the other hand the other spin bowlers bowl their quota of overs from 7 to 16 and have an economy rate of 6, where the bats man tries to keep the wickets and rotate the strike... there is a lot of difference in it... so it is right to call R.Ashwin as the current best spin ball bowler for INDIA, no doubt in it...

  • Rockie_SAT on May 31, 2011, 3:05 GMT

    Come on guys... Clearly Ashwin thinks lot better than Mendis and he proved himself whenever given a chance.. Remember the T20 in SA how his over turned the match.. Even in WC he has taken the crucial wickets and been economical when needed.. This guy is in his peak performance and its the right time to give him more opportunities..

  • maja2834 on May 30, 2011, 20:11 GMT

    Guys-Ashwin is new..remember how Ajantha Mendis came and fooled everyone with carrom ball..But where he is now..So lets not compare Aswin with Bhajji...Infact there is no comparison of T20 and international cricket also.. Remeber rohit sharma,robin uthappa,or MURALI VIJAY for that matter.....

  • ViruLaxman on May 31, 2011, 18:15 GMT

    Ashwin is the best spinner currently in India. As they say, form is transitory but class is permanent, Ashwin is definitely one of the first-class bowlers who would give the batsmen a run for their money on any day in any pitch. He's not a flash in the pan like Amit Mishra or Pragyan Ojha or Ajantha Mendis. He is a mentally tough guy and a thinking bowler, much like Muthaiah Muralitharan. Please dont compare him with Bhajji( who is another good bowler) who needs adrenalin rush(aussies/critics) to perform well.

  • vind_2801 on May 31, 2011, 17:24 GMT

    @maja2834....still a.mendis is in srilankan main squad only ...pls follow cricket before commenting ....

  • vind_2801 on May 31, 2011, 16:40 GMT

    bhaji is a spinner who is totally out of form .....bhaiji is using name of sachin to stay in team ....c his recent comments everything in praise of sachin only...bhaji shld return to nca and improve his performance like shewag or yuvi ....ashwin is current best spinner for india ....ppl like rahul sharma shld also be groomed properly ...so that their talent is not wasted ...bhaji shld give way to others ...ashwin commitment to team and franchise was also one reason he performed .....sure he will give the same commitment to India as well ...ashwin has always a taken a wicket after he was hit for six ....this shows his ability to stay calm and come back strongly ...ashwin has never lost his nerves like bhaji usually does ......but lets c how he does in the Caribbean

  • on May 31, 2011, 15:03 GMT

    Brothers look at statistic guru.. chennai had 8 Mom's but Ashwin not in them not even badhri... Just look at what a team with 10 out of 11 match winners .... because of unity ...

  • maddy1986 on May 31, 2011, 13:31 GMT

    see harbahajan is not in a prime form then why dont we try ashwin here some persons talk about that ashwin is like mendis its not really true he is using his mind like warne he is not a natural bowler like murali or mendis but the bowler like warne

  • arvindhsuperking on May 31, 2011, 10:19 GMT

    Its too early to compare ashwin with baaji...but ashwin cannot be compared with mendis as mendis can be tackled by playing back foot shots but ashwin cant be tackled easily like that..

  • on May 31, 2011, 8:12 GMT

    Harbajan is a good test bowler... but he should be omitted in limited overs cricket... ashwin is so good in it with so many variations...

    i have no hatred towards bhaji... but the last few years.. he was doing so poor in limited overs cricket... even in world cup.. he was so poor..

  • on May 31, 2011, 5:12 GMT

    one thing everybody should understand... Ashwin bowls 3 powerplay overs and have an economy rate of 6... on the other hand the other spin bowlers bowl their quota of overs from 7 to 16 and have an economy rate of 6, where the bats man tries to keep the wickets and rotate the strike... there is a lot of difference in it... so it is right to call R.Ashwin as the current best spin ball bowler for INDIA, no doubt in it...

  • Rockie_SAT on May 31, 2011, 3:05 GMT

    Come on guys... Clearly Ashwin thinks lot better than Mendis and he proved himself whenever given a chance.. Remember the T20 in SA how his over turned the match.. Even in WC he has taken the crucial wickets and been economical when needed.. This guy is in his peak performance and its the right time to give him more opportunities..

  • maja2834 on May 30, 2011, 20:11 GMT

    Guys-Ashwin is new..remember how Ajantha Mendis came and fooled everyone with carrom ball..But where he is now..So lets not compare Aswin with Bhajji...Infact there is no comparison of T20 and international cricket also.. Remeber rohit sharma,robin uthappa,or MURALI VIJAY for that matter.....

  • on May 30, 2011, 20:03 GMT

    I cant understand why there is so much animosty towards harbhajan singh.I am not saying ashwin is a bad bowler however the way some of the comments which are being said regarding harbhajan singh thats totally uncalled for.I aggree to a certain extent harbhajan singh hasnt been that effective in ODIs.But guys see he is test record he is close to 400 wickets and if my memory serves me right he was our highest wicket taker in southafrica including the last test match where he took 7 wickets.So stop dishing out cricketers just because they show charcter and aggression on field.

  • on May 30, 2011, 18:37 GMT

    I am from chennai, Bhaji is a great player. He deserves a place in all formats of the cricket. Guys understand this 8 out of 8 games CSK played in chennai have won by CSK. It is a dominant performance. the reason is not only the home crowd and their perfect batting and bowling, the pitch factor, CSk got the pitch they wanted. Likewise Indian curator from all parts of india should set up pitch which assist spinners. I hardly see Bhaji turns the ball in a test/Odi/T20. He has the ability but he gets a dead pitch. hats off to Rahul Sharma and Ashwin, they performed really well. But Sharma was in the wrong side (Worst captain and best T20 player Yuvi). Sehwag & Sachin scored 24% off the team runs, pitty on their captaincy, Dhoni was the best in captain. Kolkata should have opted to play with Morgan, Shakib & Ryan with Lee, Kalis didn't do much. Pradeep Sangwan was wasted.

  • SachinLara1 on May 30, 2011, 17:43 GMT

    @dhoni_hater: ashwin bowling 2 viru will get smashed then hw abt swann bowling 2 viru he ll get double smashed..lol

  • SachinLara1 on May 30, 2011, 17:39 GMT

    @dhoni_hater:even murali copied dooara 4m mustaq...now who stands better in worls cricket???

  • AjayVijayan on May 30, 2011, 17:30 GMT

    @dhoni_hater: Your Name itself suggest that you don't like to appreciate and acknowledge things in the right manner. R Aswin has been performing through all the IPLs, Just like Rahul Sharma (Pune Warriors), R Ashwin was the two main stand out spinner. Credit must go to them for performing so well. He relies lots of variation and hence tends to do various things, like varying pace, using bounce, using the crease etc, and its shame to tell that he is copying Swann and Mendis... Hehe ...........Just to laugh @ you...U funny creep

    Kudos to M.S. Dhoni, he has been the captain who is winning in all forms of cricket. Now don't say he is lucky, u can't ride on luck for 4 years in International Cricket. He has now in his kitty, #1 in Test, WCUP 2011, T20 WC 2007, 2 IPL Crown, 1 Champions League. He has shown what captaincy is all about in all forms of cricket. Just because he replaced Ganguly as captain, don't be blind folded. Shame on you to still being a Dhoni Hater.....

  • rustyryan on May 30, 2011, 16:34 GMT

    @Hari Hara Sudhan K: Well Said Mate. May be those guys wouldn dare to log in cricinfo til WI tour.

  • dhoni_hater on May 30, 2011, 16:18 GMT

    Ashwin may be good spinner but not a great spinner in the world.. Ashwin copying the bowling tactics of both swann and mendis and its work out.. Its not great thing to take a wicket of Chris gayle Because Every left handed batsmen fail to off spinner sure.. If he is a best spinner in the world he have to bowl to sehwag who will give good treatment to any kind of spinner..The reason for ashwin sucess in ipl is Every ipl team has one australian player panic for spin bowling except hussey and every team has one left opener. this made him take a wicket.. Aswin was not hammered by batsmen because he wasnt exposed lot if he got more chance and exposed he will be another mendis.. zimbawe series he has been hammered run a ball.. currently Swann is best bowler in world..

  • gurussm on May 30, 2011, 13:50 GMT

    time for harbhajan singh to leave the indian side

  • on May 30, 2011, 12:59 GMT

    I can understand only 5 comments!!! If they want to blame any Chennai player then there will be 50 comments!!!

  • on May 30, 2011, 12:45 GMT

    Bhajji should help groom ashwin instead of competing against him. Bhajji could have rested for the WI tour.

  • on May 30, 2011, 12:10 GMT

    Bhajji is hanging in their with his past records in his favor...Ashwin deserves a spot in 20-20 and 50s not sure how he will do in tests

  • AllwinJ on May 30, 2011, 11:57 GMT

    Bhajji is the most over rated bowler in India right now. Yea, its a shame Ashwin wont get a chance in tests until Bhajji decides to quit.

  • gopakumar85 on May 30, 2011, 11:13 GMT

    finallly we have got a bowler who can make a name for himself without living in the shadows of the senior spin bowlers like bhajji. now ms dont have to entirely relay on bajji no offense bhajji is still the world class bowler but it is making job eaiser for ms from here on and also for indian selectors as then can have permanent 2 spinners in the wings any time. well done ashwin people like u make the country proud..

  • CricketMaan on May 30, 2011, 10:33 GMT

    Well done Ashwin, its a shame you have to wait for at least 5 years until Bhajji hangs his boots to claim your place in the Test set up..i cant see any captain playing 2 offies in the same Test, let alone an Indian captain...Stuar MacGill who was a more productive when he played had his career run paralled with Warnie, Badri has been unfortunate and wating for RD, VVS, SRT to hang thier boots..hope you dont have to go thro' the same torture called 'WAIT for your turn & time..'

  • lok4cric on May 30, 2011, 10:04 GMT

    ashwin in d present form is by far d best spinner in d country..he desereves lot more chances in d shorter form of d game..

  • on May 30, 2011, 9:58 GMT

    Agree Ashwin has a thinking brain to add to his variations in spin, keep it up young man would be great if his potential grows to play in test matches as well , Great find for India !

  • on May 30, 2011, 9:15 GMT

    R Ashwin is a very good bowler and thinks about the game a lot. He has done really well for Chennai for the last 2 years and deserves all the credit he is getting. If Harbhajan doesn't pull up his socks soon in the shorter formats of the game, R Ashwin might overtake him as India's best off-spinner.

  • Darnakka on May 30, 2011, 8:26 GMT

    Ashwin is now definitely better than Bhajji. This is not a knee-jerk statement. But looking at his performance over the past two years, he should definitely get the not as first spinner in the country and should play in all the matches.

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  • Darnakka on May 30, 2011, 8:26 GMT

    Ashwin is now definitely better than Bhajji. This is not a knee-jerk statement. But looking at his performance over the past two years, he should definitely get the not as first spinner in the country and should play in all the matches.

  • on May 30, 2011, 9:15 GMT

    R Ashwin is a very good bowler and thinks about the game a lot. He has done really well for Chennai for the last 2 years and deserves all the credit he is getting. If Harbhajan doesn't pull up his socks soon in the shorter formats of the game, R Ashwin might overtake him as India's best off-spinner.

  • on May 30, 2011, 9:58 GMT

    Agree Ashwin has a thinking brain to add to his variations in spin, keep it up young man would be great if his potential grows to play in test matches as well , Great find for India !

  • lok4cric on May 30, 2011, 10:04 GMT

    ashwin in d present form is by far d best spinner in d country..he desereves lot more chances in d shorter form of d game..

  • CricketMaan on May 30, 2011, 10:33 GMT

    Well done Ashwin, its a shame you have to wait for at least 5 years until Bhajji hangs his boots to claim your place in the Test set up..i cant see any captain playing 2 offies in the same Test, let alone an Indian captain...Stuar MacGill who was a more productive when he played had his career run paralled with Warnie, Badri has been unfortunate and wating for RD, VVS, SRT to hang thier boots..hope you dont have to go thro' the same torture called 'WAIT for your turn & time..'

  • gopakumar85 on May 30, 2011, 11:13 GMT

    finallly we have got a bowler who can make a name for himself without living in the shadows of the senior spin bowlers like bhajji. now ms dont have to entirely relay on bajji no offense bhajji is still the world class bowler but it is making job eaiser for ms from here on and also for indian selectors as then can have permanent 2 spinners in the wings any time. well done ashwin people like u make the country proud..

  • AllwinJ on May 30, 2011, 11:57 GMT

    Bhajji is the most over rated bowler in India right now. Yea, its a shame Ashwin wont get a chance in tests until Bhajji decides to quit.

  • on May 30, 2011, 12:10 GMT

    Bhajji is hanging in their with his past records in his favor...Ashwin deserves a spot in 20-20 and 50s not sure how he will do in tests

  • on May 30, 2011, 12:45 GMT

    Bhajji should help groom ashwin instead of competing against him. Bhajji could have rested for the WI tour.

  • on May 30, 2011, 12:59 GMT

    I can understand only 5 comments!!! If they want to blame any Chennai player then there will be 50 comments!!!