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WI coach praises Ashwin and calls him wicket taker on any surface

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Phil Simmons (Image Credits: Reuters)

Windies coach Phil Simmons has praised Ravichandran Ashwin and said that he can pick wickets on any kind of surface. The team has been consistently troubled by India’s ace spinner and took his 18th five for in Test Cricket. Simmons urged his bowlers to pick remaining five Indian wickets as the match hangs in the balance.

India could score only 232 runs in the 88 overs bowled on the second day to finish at 358/5 at stumps and Simmons said he could see a lot of improvement in his bowlers.

“I think it was a lot better. Usually you average a day to be 270 in Test cricket with 90 full overs and we have restricted them, especially with KL Rahul going the way he was and then the skipper later. Restricting them to 230 in 90 overs shows there’s improvement from Antigua,” Simmons said.

“The only thing we can do is to come again tomorrow and work hard to get the wickets that we have to. And then the batsmen have got to stand up because the bowlers have stood up today. Hopefully they will stand up again tomorrow morning and we get the wickets we need,” he added.

KL Rahul, who opened the batting instead of injured Murali Vijay scored his third Century and said that WI bowlers bowled with lot of discipline and made it hard for Indian batsmen to score freely.

“We have plans for everybody, to get their wickets and stop them scoring. We got Kohli cheaply this time, which is good for us. But we have plans for every batsman so its about how we execute what plans we have for them,” said the coach.

“I think the bowlers learned today what we have been talking about for the last six months, about being patient in Test cricket. And when the wicket isn’t assisting like this one you have to be patient.

“Then the pressure that you build from patience will get you wickets. They are seeking the patience now, and they are trying to hold these world class batsmen,” he added.

Simmons backed the decision of Jason Holder to bat first on a damp wicket and blamed batsmen for not applying themselves and throwing their wicket away.

Ashwin has already picked up 12 wickets and Simmons believes that he is bowling beautifully and will be a threat in the second innings.

“Ashwin is the number one bowler in the world. He is going to be difficult on any wicket you play him on, let alone a wicket that’s turning and has some bounce too. It’s going to be difficult but that’s what Test cricket is about.

“If its not difficult it won’t be called Test cricket. The batsmen know that they have to come and make sure that they put their heads down and they have to work hard against both spinners,” he signed off.