Ravichandran Ashwin dismissed Tom Latham on Monday to go past Harbhajan Singh.© AFP
Ravichandran Ashwin on Monday became India’s third-highest all-time wicket-taker in Test cricket, surpassing veteran off-spinner Harbhajan Singh in the elite list. He achieved this feat on Day five of the ongoing first Test between India and New Zealand at the Green Park Stadium in Kanpur. He dismissed the Kiwi vice-captain Tom Latham to reach the milestone. Ahead of the first Test, Ashwin needed five wickets to pip Harbhajan Singh’s tally of 417 wickets in the longest format of the game.
In the first innings, Ashwin had taken three wickets to take his tally of wickets to 416. In the second innings, he dismissed Kiwi openers Will Young just ahead of stumps on Day four, before castling Latham in the second session of the final day.
Only Anil Kumble and Kapil Dev have taken more wickets for India in the whites than Ashwin (418). Kumble, the legendary leg-spinner, had registered 619 scalps in 132 Tests while the former Indian skipper, Kapil Dev, had scalped 434 wickets in 131 appearances.
After declaring their second innings on 234/7, India have handed New Zealand a stiff target of 284 runs in the first Test.
The Kiwis were 79/1 at Lunch on Day five before Umesh Yadav gave India the much-needed breakthrough on the first ball of the second session.
Ashwin then got the better of Latham to put the visitors three down. With just over two hours of play left, it will be interesting to see whether the Indian bowlers can work their magic.
Intially, India had scored 345 in the first innings before Axar Patel’s five-for saw the Kiwis being bowled out for 296, trailing India by 49 runs.
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