Ravichandran Ashwin was on the cusp of attaining a record which has been achieved by only two more players in the history of the game – Ian Botham and Richie Benaud. But then he ran into Ravindra Jadeja who decided to clean up the England team in the second innings of the fifth Test in Chennai.
Ravichandran Ashwin needed just two more wickets on the final day to reach 30 wickets for the series against England, and he would have been just the third player in the history of Test cricket to attain 30 wickets and 300 runs in a series. England legend Ian Botham and former Aussie all-rounder Richie Benaud are the only two players to have achieved this feat.
Instead, Ashwin’s journey to that rare feat was halted by Ravindra Jadeja.
The left-arm spinner picked up seven wickets and took India to a comfortable win, leaving Ashwin stranded on 28 wickets for the series and 306 runs in the bag. The irony amid all this was that Ashwin, inarguably the best bowler of recent times, was denied the record on an Indian pitch – that too in his home ground by a fellow spinner.
However, Ashwin did become the first player to capture 25 wickets and 250 runs in a series since Botham did it in the 1985 Ashes series. In fact, he became the first player to do so in a 5-match series since South African Trevor Goddard did it against Australia in the 1966-67 series.
The last Indian all-rounder to reach this landmark was none other than Kapil Dev, who picked up 32 wickets and scored 278 runs in the home series against Pakistan in 1979-80.