Kanpur, November 29: Off-spinner R Ashwin became the third highest wicket-taker in Test cricket for India on Monday (November 29), the fifth day of the first Test between India and New Zealand.
Ashwin started the day on 417 Test wickets, similar numbers to another offie Harbhajan Singh, and went past him, dismissing Tom Latham of New Zealand.
Now, Ashwin is behind Anil Kumble, the leading wicket-taker for India in Test cricket with 619 wickets and Kapil Dev, who has 434 Test wickets.
Ashwin had taken three wickets in the first innings after Axar Patel’s five-wicket haul helped India earn a small but significant lead. The Tamil Nadu cricketer also raised a fifty stand with Shreyas Iyer in the second innings after India found themselves in a marshy place at 51 for 5.
Ashwin has also seen a resurgence in his white ball career that seemed to have hit a trough post 2017 when India preferred the leg-spinners Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav.
However, Ashwin made a comeback into the India side for the ICC T20 World Cup 2021 held in the UAE and played three matches against Afghanistan, Scotland and Namibia, impressing all and sundry.
However, his absence against stronger opposition like Pakistan and New Zealand was questioned as India lost both those matches, and went out of the event without entering the knockouts.
However, Ashwin retained his place in the side and played the first two T20I matches against New Zealand and was among wickets once again. So, this effort in Test might have come as doubly sweeter for him.
Shreyas Iyer too achieved a personal milestone when became the first Indian batsman to score a hundred and fifty in the debut Test.
KS Ranjitsinhji too had this feat back in 1896, the first player to achieve the feat of scoring 100 and 50 on debut, he played for England then. He scored it at Manchester against Australia.
Others in the list are: George Gunn (England), Herbia Collins (England), Paul Gibb (England), Lawrence Row (West Indies), Rodney Redmond (New Zealand), Gordon Greenidge (West Indies), Azhar Mahmood (Pakistan), Lou Vincent (New Zealand), Scott Styris (New Zealand), Yasir Hameed (Pakistan), Andrew Strauss (England), Alistair Cook (England), Umar Akmal (Pakistan), Fat du Plessis (South Africa).
Patience is key: Umesh
On bowling on the Green Park Stadium pitch, pacer Umesh Yadav said: “So far, it has been good. After a long time, I am playing a Test so it takes time to regain rhythm. I think my body is a little better because we had four-day camp in Mumbai heading into this series against New Zealand.
“I feel New Zealand bowlers were trying to swing the ball and we were trying to hit the deck in the first innings. For the ball to swing more, I feel we need to bowl a tad slower," Umesh told host broadcaster Star Sports before the start of play on Day 5.
"It depends on the wicket. If we bowl wicket-to-wicket, we will be in good stead. We will try to bowl with clear plans so that we create more chances for LBW or bowled," he added.