Ravichandran Ashwin, who has replaced Harbhajan Singh as India's premier spinner, was bowling at the nets when Wisden India caught up with him at the National Cricket Academy in Bangalore. One of the few Indian spinners that flights the ball, Ashwin caught the attention of the national selectors primarily after strong performances for Chennai Super Kings in the Indian Premier League.
Part of the squad to tour Sri Lanka for five One-Day Internationals and one Twenty20 International starting on July 21, Ashwin felt that the long break had been beneficial for the team. "We had a good one-month break after the IPL," Ashwin said. "And coming back from a holiday now has certainly freshened up the mind before a long season ahead."
Ashwin, whose six-wicket haul led his team, Brindavan Cricket Club, to victory in a TNCA league match on July 6, was positive that preparations ahead of the Sri Lanka tour were on track. "I did play a couple of local matches back home," he said. "That will help me slowly ease into it with practice for another week."