Advertisement

HindustanTimes Sun,21 Sep 2014
Jokes apart, Jadeja masters the art of attack
Sai Prasad Mohapatra, Hindustan Times
Sharjah, April 25, 2014
First Published: 01:38 IST(25/4/2014)
Last Updated: 01:44 IST(25/4/2014)

He is the subject of numerous online jokes, ranging from cricketing to personal, often providing a sense of comic to what Ravindra Jadeja does. His match-winning deeds are compared to none other than the southern superstar Rajnikanth, who is deified through an incessant flow of jokes.

Jadeja entertains in many ways. His long-winded answers at press conferences are a source of mirth too. Mahendra Singh Dhoni, his India and Chennai Super Kings skipper, mocks him in his tweets.

But the 25-year-old takes the “knighthood” and “Sir Ravindra” jokes sportingly, and even laughs at himself. The one other thing that is amusing and confusing about him is whether he is a batting all-rounder or bowling all-rounder, or a genuine all-rounder! Arguments, for and against, add to the fun. No one knows which Jadeja will wake up that day.

UTILITY VALUE
Against Rajasthan Royals on Wednesday, there was a fair bit of both. In the end, it was a job almost single-handedly done, 35 not out and 4/33 to seal a tense match in Dubai. Such performances lead to another debate, about his role in the team.

By his own admission, and that of his coach Mahendra Chauhan, he is a bowling all-rounder. But three triple centuries in domestic cricket means not many will buy that argument. Some believe Jadeja is trying to mask his batting credentials. Some say it’s a trick to escape heavy criticism whenever he fails with the bat.

Amidst these debates, there are two qualities he always displays — accuracy and discipline. The ability to pitch the ball at the same spot with only the speed varying — anywhere between 78-105 kph — plays on the batsman’s mind. Some deliveries turn sharply, others keep straight. That makes batsmen prime candidates for leg before. And a flat trajectory gives little time for batsmen to get under the ball to play big shots in T20s.

MEASURED KNOCKS
He is also at peace with his batting technique. Not always over-ambitious, his realistic assessment of the wicket means the focus is on running hard between the wickets and playing big shots only occasionally — utility over frills.

The jokes around Jadeja — over his moustache, his $2 million tag and Shane Warne dubbing him a rockstar – are but a happy distraction. Amidst all that, a serious cricketer goes about his business without fuss. And the quick runs or wickets in a bunch just indicate that the competitive streak takes over when things turn serious for his team. And it did on Wednesday.


comment Note: By posting your comments here you agree to the terms and conditions of www.hindustantimes.com
blog comments powered by Disqus

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Copyright © 2014 HT Media Limited. All Rights Reserved