IPL News: Furious Ravichandran Ashwin Blames ‘IPL Warfare’

Ravichandran Ashwin, a prominent figure in Indian cricket, has voiced his frustration amidst the ongoing social media debates sparked by the announcement of India’s squad for the Asia Cup 2023. This squad reveal ignited discussions across various platforms, with opinions divided on whether it was a well-constructed team. What particularly irked Ashwin, who himself was not part of the selected roster, were the criticisms and doubts raised regarding certain players. To drive home his point, he singled out two players in particular: Tilak Varma and Suryakumar Yadav.

Tilak Varma, a relatively unproven talent in the One Day International (ODI) format, came under scrutiny due to his performance in the Ireland series. Ashwin acknowledged that Varma hadn’t racked up substantial runs in the series but emphasized his admiration for Varma’s unwavering intent and fresh approach to the game. It was this unique mindset that, in Ashwin’s opinion, had secured Varma a spot in the squad. Similarly, Ashwin mounted a strong defense of Suryakumar Yadav. While recognizing Suryakumar’s recent struggle in the ODI format, Ashwin lauded his undeniable X-factor and his reputation as a match-winner, particularly in the context of Twenty20 (T20) cricket.

Ashwin delved deeper into the concept of backing players, citing the examples of previous World Cup-winning captains like MS Dhoni. These captains had consistently thrown their support behind the players they had selected, often reaping significant rewards. Ashwin acknowledged that debates about player selection were an inherent part of cricket fandom, but he attributed a significant portion of the current discussions to the far-reaching influence of the Indian Premier League (IPL).

According to Ashwin, the IPL, with its high stakes, intense competition, and passionate fandom, often left a lasting impact on the perception of players. This impact extended well beyond the tournament’s conclusion, shaping opinions and sparking debates in various cricketing forums. Ashwin’s point was clear: fans should not allow their IPL loyalties to overshadow their appreciation for players representing the national team.

He emphasized that when players don the national colors, they cease to be just IPL franchise players. They become ambassadors of the nation and should be viewed as such. Ashwin urged cricket enthusiasts to transcend their IPL biases and recognize and applaud the skills and contributions of players representing the country on the international stage. He presented a scenario where Suryakumar Yadav, for instance, could find himself partnering with Virat Kohli in a crucial chase. In such moments, he argued, fans should unite in their support, regardless of their IPL affiliations.

Ashwin concluded by highlighting the expertise of the selectors in shaping the squad. He acknowledged that in a cricket-mad nation like India, it was inevitable that some deserving players would miss out on selection. As a result, he implored fans not to belittle the achievements of the chosen players just because their personal favorites had not made the cut.

Meanwhile, India’s Asia Cup 2023 campaign is set to commence on September 2 in Colombo with a highly anticipated clash against arch-rivals Pakistan. Ashwin’s impassioned plea was a call for cricket fans to rise above their IPL biases, appreciate the diversity of talent in the national squad, and wholeheartedly support the Indian team as it embarked on this significant cricketing journey.