The India vs Australia Test series set to begin next month will not be short of aggression just because the Indian touring party does not include Harbhajan Singh, reckoned Bishan Singh Bedi.

Brilliant: R Ashwin celebrates after sending back a West Indies batsman
in the Mumbai Test recently.

Bedi, who made two Test tours to Australia in 1967-68 and 1977-78 (as captain), is convinced that Ravichandran Ashwin, who replaced Harbhajan in the Test team, is an aggressive player, capable of giving back to the opposition.

 Bishan Singh Bedi

"There will still be a lot of aggro. Both teams will fight hard. This new kid (Ashwin) is no saint and he is not lagging behind in that sense.

He can get into the thick of things and be demonstrative," Bedi told MiD DAY yesterday. Ashwin walked away with the man-of-the-match and man-of-the-series awards after last week's thrilling draw against WI in Mumbai.
Bedi admired Ashwin for his action. "He has a clean one," said the spin great, who has made the issue of chucking his pet hate. "He looks good and has capitalised on the opportunity given to him. And from what Venkat (Srinivas Venkataraghavan) and Erapalli Prasanna tell me, he is an intelligent bowler."

Bedi reckoned that the Australia tour will be his big challenge. "He will be a novice there. He is a novice even now after playing just three Tests.

His test will be on good wickets and better opposition," said Bedi. The outspoken Sardar of Spin thought Ashwin's 'I felt cheated' comment in the middle of the recent Mumbai Test was in poor taste.

"I didn't like his statement. It's far too early in his career to make that kind of statement. He cannot expect tracks with turn and bounce everywhere," said Bedi.