Baroda off-spinner Mahesh Pithiya, who gained notoriety earlier this year for assisting the Australian cricket team in net sessions ahead of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in India, has declined an offer to join the Aussies once more in preparation for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023.
Pithiya was recruited by the Australian team management earlier to counter the threat posed by India’s ace off-spinner, Ravichandran Ashwin. It’s worth noting that Pithiya considers Ashwin his role model, and his bowling action closely resembles that of the Indian veteran.
As Australia gears up for the World Cup, they had approached the 21-year-old again, but this time, Pithiya turned down the offer.
While speaking about his decision, Pithiya told Sportstar, “It was certainly an exciting offer, but then, I am also part of the Baroda set-up for the domestic season that begins next month. So, I thought about it, spoke to our coach and informed them that it won’t be possible for me to join the camp this time around.”
Australia called Mahesh Pithiya after BCCI included R Ashwin in India’s ODI World Cup 2023 squad
Australia will to begin their World Cup campaign against host India in Chennai on October 8.
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The Chepauk pitch is renowned for assisting spinners, and Ashwin has been included in India’s World Cup squad after injury to left-arm spinner Axar Patel.
“As soon as the BCCI announced Ashwin as the replacement for Axar, I got the call. It is always exciting to work with international teams, but my priority is domestic cricket. I have come so far because of playing for Baroda, and ahead of a long season, I thought I should focus on my game and not join the Australian team,” Pithiya added.
Meanwhile, Australia’s first warm-up match of the tournament was abandoned due to inclement weather. Nonetheless, standout performances from players like Steve Smith and Cameron Green at the crease and an exceptional hat-trick by Mitchell Starc highlighted their encounter against the Netherlands before rain disrupted proceedings.
Also READ: Complete list of ODI World Cup Winning Captains, Player of the Match in Final and Player of the Series
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