De Villiers laughs off Ashwin issue

Proteas skipper plays down twin dismissals to veteran off-spinner as Proteas prepare for ODI series in India

South Africa skipper AB de Villiers has denied India spinner Ravi Ashwin has a hold over him after consecutive dismissals in the T20 series.

The five-match ODI series starts tomorrow at the Green Park Stadium in Kanpur with the hosts taking a lot of heart from the way the experienced Ashwin got the better of their de Villiers in both T20 matches.

At Dharamsala in the first T20, Ashwin's turn did for de Villiers. Looking to chip down the track and loft the offie over the top, a sharply-spinning delivery beat the inside edge of the bat to bowl him.

Then in the second T20 at Cuttack, de Villiers was deceived by one that didn't turn, this time playing inside the line and again was bowled.

The South African captain, however, doesn't believe Ashwin has a wood on him.

"He is a very good bowler but I don’t feel he got me out in either of the two games, I got myself out in both the games," de Villiers said.

"When you start getting technical flaws against a bowler, then you have to worry about it."

"I was looking to dominate against him and in the last game I got a little bit lazy perhaps. I played for spin but I didn’t get spin. There is not too much to worry about except for the fact that he is a world-class bowler and he needs to be respected."

In five previous ODIs against India with Ashwin in the XI, de Villiers has not fallen to him once. And nor has he been dismissed by Ashwin in the lone Test the two locked horns against each other.

Ashwin celebrates removing AB in a T20 // Getty

In fact, de Villiers averages 57.80 in those five ODIs, and has hit two fifties and a century in the process.

Still, India are expected to field spin-heavy attacks on pitches conducive to turn. The Proteas skipper said the Kanpur pitch shouldn't cause any worry for his "very balanced bowling attack".

"It is nice to have Morne Morkel and Dale Steyn back, they have a lot of experience," said de Villiers. "We haven’t seen them for a while so they bring good energy and experience to the side.

"We have got a very balanced bowling attack. We don’t lean too much on the seamers or the spin bowlers.

"We have seen that over the years, over the last few years especially, we have got a lot of pace with the guys who can swing it and move it off the seam. We have good spin bowlers as well. We have an off-spinner and a leg-spinner, we have got Phangiso as an option as well. We cover all bases I feel."