Dropped Ashwin and Jadeja can play for Australia, jokes Michael Clarke

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Dropped Ashwin and Jadeja can play for Australia, jokes Michael Clarke

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SportsCafe Desk

09/13/2017

Michael Clarke showed his funny side while commenting on R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja's absence from the Indian ODI team stating that Australia would be happy to sponsor the duo to play for them. He added that tackling spin would be not a major concern for the Australians on flat Indian pitches.

Ashwin and Jadeja's exclusion from the first three ODIs against Australia has surprised many and even Clarke failed to understand why India dropped their best spinners in a big series. 

"We will be happily sponsoring Ashwin and Jadeja to play for us if India don't need them for the first three games," Clarke joked as quoted by TOI.

In their last series against Bangladesh, the Aussie players were troubled by the spin on offer in Dhaka and Chittagong which resulted in their first ever Test match loss to the hosts. India possess a great amount of spin talent as well but Clarke seemed unflustered by the idea of having to play spin in ODIs stating that nowadays cricket was being played on flat pitches everywhere.

"Conditions in Test matches and ODIs are a lot different. You get flat pitches to bat on in ODIs and T20s. 95 percent of the pitches around the world are similar in ODIs. You don't have to worry about dealing with spinners on Day 3, 4 and 5," Clarke added. 

Last time Australia visited India for a seven-match ODI series in October 2013 which ended in a victory for the home side. The former Australian player recalled coming to India as a youngster and how the likes of Harbhajan Singh and Anil Kumble, who led the spin attack at that time, gave the Indian team a slight advantage. He also believed that Kuldeep Yadav can make a difference and has the ability to became a crucial part of the squad.

"It is a combination of quality of spinners and the pitches. Those days you faced very high quality spinners in Harbhajan and Anil Kumble. In Test cricket, it became tougher. Ashwin and Jadeja too have done that in Tests. These days and on these kind of pitches, Australian batsmen shouldn't have much of a problem. If Australia can win the first game, they will be in with a real shot.

“I think Kuldeep Yadav is a superstar and he will be a big part of the team going forward," Clarke stated.

Clarke accepted that in the absence of the main spinners, the responsibility will be on Adam Zampa and Ashton Agar to deliver for the visitors. However, the former Australia captain added that the experience of playing Indian Premier League in the sub-continent will help the Kangaroos in the upcoming encounters.

"Man-to-man, I would say Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood are two big misses.

"People like Aaron Finch, Glenn Maxwell and James Faulkner will need to have a good series. The top four need to fire," Clarke said

Dispelling doubts over Warner's future once he lets go off his big, heavy bat after this series, Clarke said "At the moment, Warner could even bat with a stump!"

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