Indian off-spinner R Ashwin knows how to excel in his newly appointed role as a captain. Ashwin is leading Kings XI Punjab this year in IPL and he is clear about his duty. The spinner feels that when it comes to leadership, his experience with the senior players like Gautam Gambhir, MS Dhoni, and Virender Sehwag will help him in his new stint in the IPL. However, he won't be copying anyone else captaincy style.
In an Exclusive interview with India TV, he said, "Every captain's style is different and I will use the Chennai Super Kings' experience. I will not copy MS Dhoni's calm and cool quotient or Virat Kohli's aggression, I'll lead differently and apply the experience I've learnt under Viru pajji (Virender Sehwag) and Gautam Gambhir, the senior players and incorporate them in my leadership qualities."
Ashwin praised Sehwag for picking up a bowler to lead the team. "When we play for Team India, the pressure is different than the IPL as the concentration will be on not losing the matches. We can't win every game. Our losses will determine our campaign and how we react to every loss we suffer, we will learn from that. And I think, a bowler will know how another bowler mindset be like and it's quite difficult to make a comeback after being thrashed, so I laud Sehwag's decision on making a bowler a captain".
Ashwin was part of Chennai Super Kings' two IPL wins and he knows what it takes to be a champion. The ex-CSK player says a strong team unit is needed to lift the cup and they will build it in next few years. "CSK had a good trade that they had a core Indian player in the team. It was more of an International team and were very strong. We want to build a strong unit over the past three to five years and win the IPL as we have built a team for the next three years," said Ashwin on winning the IPL trophy.
The Tamil Nadu spinner wants his players to enjoy on the field without too much pressure. "The team is as good as a captain and my mom use to say this, 'desperation will kill ambition', we don't want to put the pressure of a winning mentality. We want the players to enjoy and give them the freedom to enjoy".
Ashwin knows how to handle the big names like Yuvraj Singh, Chris Gayle, Aaron Finch, David Miller and KL Rahul in his squad. "It's not such a big challenge handling the egos of the big stars in our team. Yuvi wants to play in the 2019 World Cup and Chris wants to prove that he still has the ability to perform, they want to see something forward. They want to prove themselves. They do not have to be told on how to perform and we will trust them with what they are doing".
The 31-year-old knows the X-factors of his team and he will be backing them. "I believe that we have our X-factors in our bowling line up as we have Andrew Tye, Ben Dorsh, Mujeeb Ur Rahman and I will try back the bowlers as I am confident that the batsmen will perform".
"Momentum and believe is very important in the IPL. Every player has to play and the team should have the confidence of making a comeback from any situation. I believe that this team has matchwinners."
Ashwin says they are not thinking too much about the results. It's all about fun under his captaincy. "I want the team to have fun, enjoy the campaign build a friendship and lead the team to excellence", concluded Ashwin.