Will be surprised if India don't dominate World Cup 2019 like Australia did in 2003 or '07, says Ashwin

India all-rounder Ravichandran Ashwin said he was confident that India would dominate the ongoing Cricket World Cup 2019 like Australia did in 2003 and 2007.

Ravichandran Ashwin has also backed wrist spinners Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal to shine at the ongoing ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.   -  M. Vedhan

India all-rounder Ravichandran Ashwin, at the launch of his foundation to address various social issues on Tuesday in Chennai, said he had been so busy over the past few days that he missed India’s ICC World Cup 2019 opener against South Africa.

“My entire mind and heart has been here (Ashwin Foundation) since the last 15 days. I could only watch the India-Australia match. It is quite a bit of surprise to myself because this moment the (launch of the foundation) is as special as the first ball I bowled in Test cricket. It had never happened in my life that I missed a cricket match and that too of World Cup stature,” he said.

Ashwin, however, did not forget to stress on the fact that India has a strong chance to lift the coveted trophy at the showpiece tournament. “We will get to the business end in a couple of weeks. India will go on to dominate this World Cup like Australia in 2003 or ‘07. I will be very surprised if they don’t,” he said.

The off-spinner, who will leave for England on June 25 to join his new county side Nottinghamshire for a game scheduled five days later, said, “After IPL, I have done a lot of work that I enjoy at the end of the day. It is important to try and contribute. I am not playing the same amount of cricket as I was playing a year ago. So it is important I manage my workload and give myself a decent time and chance in training. Now I will give myself three games before I get into the season.”

It has often been said that the wrist-spinning fraternity supersedes the finger spinners in the shorter format of the game. Even India head coach Ravi Shastri and skipper Virat Kohli, on earlier occasions, have individually backed wrist spinners for their ability to snap up wickets during the middle overs.

Ashwin, though, batted for his own kind saying, “I stand up for the finger-spinning community. If you are good, you are good. Wrist spinners and finger spinners are perceptions and look... honestly, you have got to give credit to Kuldeep and Chahal for what they have done over a year and a half. Chahal is continuing to do well in the World Cup but that does not throw anything out in the garbage if you know what I mean.

“As far as I see they all are just spinners or rather bowlers. Whoever does well it is a question of adapting and understanding what is required in a particular game, in a particular pitch against a particular batsman. Doesn’t matter what bowler you are, you just need to be a good bowler, that’s it.”