The Yorkshire County Cricket Club can confirm the acquisition of Indian Test spinner Ravichandran Ashwin for the majority of the 2020 Specsavers County Championship season.
Ashwin, 33, who will play for Delhi Capitals in the Indian Premier League 2020, is set to take up the reins as the Club’s front-line ‘overseas spinner’ following Keshav Maharaj’s successful stint in 2019.
The Club confirmed in December that Maharaj, who took 38 wickets in five matches last year, including two half centuries, will re-join the side for the opening two County Championship fixtures of the season – at home to Gloucestershire (April 12) and Essex at Chelmsford (April 19).
Ashwin is scheduled to feature in a minimum of eight County Championship fixtures for the White Rose next season, upon conclusion of his IPL commitments and following a short period of rest at the BCCI’s request.
The Chennai-born, bowling all-rounder has taken 362 wickets in 70 Tests, 254 of those in 43 home Tests and recently claimed his 27th five-wicket haul in Test cricket. Widely regarded as one of the best spinners India has ever produced, he is his country’s fourth highest wicket-taker and claimed the most international wickets across all three formats last decade (564).
The tall, wily, Tamil Nadu off-spinner, a World Cup winner in 2011, made his Test debut in Delhi against the West Indies in 2011, claiming two five-wicket hauls and a century, culminating in him winning Man of the Series.
He told yorkshireccc.com: “I’m thrilled to be joining Yorkshire, a club with a wonderful history and a fantastic fan base.
“I think our team looks extremely talented with some superb pace bowlers and exciting batsmen. Hopefully my role as the spinner will be a key feature in helping the team achieve success.
“Headingley has always been a fantastic venue to play at. People speak about the overhead conditions playing a big part so let’s hope for plenty of sun.
“I love playing First-Class cricket and have enjoyed my two previous spells with Worcestershire and Nottinghamshire.
“My role will be to score runs and take wickets but it will be a collective effort if we are to win the title.
“I feel I have been consistent over a long period of time which has helped my success for India. I’m a deep thinker about the game and bowling in particular and will be researching my opponents carefully to ensure I have the edge.
“I know a lot about Yorkshire and to follow in the footsteps of Sachin, who played for the county many years ago is a wonderful feeling for me.”