On the cricket pitch, Ravichandran Ashwin has never shied away from thinking ‘beyond the box.’ In the 2019 edition of the Indian Premier League, his infamous use of the ‘Mankad’ dismissal against Jos Buttler drew a lot of attention, and in this season’s tournament, the Rajasthan Royals veteran sparked another debate when he became the first batter to be ‘retired out’ during the game against Lucknow Super Giants.

Shane Watson, a former Australia all-rounder and current Delhi Capitals assistant coach, spoke out against the event earlier this week, expressing his displeasure with the Royals’ decision. While Watson, who is 40 years old, assured that such a thing would not happen with the Delhi Capitals, he went on to explain why.

“That’s not going to happen here” (at Delhi Capitals). How do you learn to go through a couple of balls where you aren’t scoring runs as a batsman? On The Grade Cricketer podcast, Watson noted, “That’s part of your evolution as a cricketer.”

Watson discreetly shook his head when asked about the event before noting that the Royals have always “questioned the status quo.”

“He just seems to be that man,” says the narrator. He was content to test the Mankad rule to its limits. It’s been altered now, and he’s the first to step down. In some respects, RR is always seeking to question the existing quo. “They absolutely did that night, and Ashwin was the one that raised his hand,” Watson added.