India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin loves a good fight and that’s the reason he is more excited than intimidated at the prospect of challenging the ever aggressive Chris Gayle against the West Indies in their cricket World Cup match here tomorrow.
“It’s not just about Chris Gayle but any attacking batsman in world cricket. Anybody who attacks wants to put you off your hook. It’s similar. I’m content to look at the wicket and I go strongly for getting wickets off any batsman that I think is dangerous, because I like it,” Ashwin told mediapersons at the pre-match conference today.
“I like to throw myself in the middle and try to see how much I can make an impact in that particular game. Be it Chris Gayle, AB de Villiers anybody. I look to get them out in the middle. Once you get them out, the game is going to clear the way,” he said.
With eight wickets from three games so far, Ashwin has made a great start to the World Cup but he doesn’t want to term it as his best-ever bowling.
“I’m pleased. It is quite heartening to get wickets. It is always good to perform well. It gives you a lot of confidence. I think my journey as a bowler in international cricket has been some sort of a learning curve. There are times when you think you’re bowling really well and you end up learning even more in that particular phase. So you can’t really say you’re bowling at your best,” the lad from Tamil Nadu insisted.
“There have been times before when I thought I’m bowling at my best, but immediately like in 10 months or a year’s time, I always found there is another gear to go up. You never know with this game. If you’re open to learning, I think the summit is very high,” he added.
Asked about his preparation for this game, Ashwin replied, “But in terms of preparation for the game, it’s going to be the same. Because we prepare for every other team like we prepare for the big teams. It’s not going to be very different. We’re pretty confident about executing tomorrow.”
The burly bowler also spoke with caution as he didn’t want to look too far ahead to the semi-final.
“I don’t think we’re there. There are three games and Ireland’s also played good cricket. We’re pretty aware of what’s happening around us in the group. It’s very important that we take it one game at a time. We like to treat every game like it’s a knockout game so that it propels us in a good state.”