IPL 2018: Chennai Super Kings glad Ravindra Jadeja delivered when required
The pressure on him was evident in Ravindra Jadeja’s subdued celebrations during the match against Royal Challengers Bangalore. Most bowlers would be ecstatic after claiming the wicket of Virat Kohli, but Jadeja didn’t even raise his arms fully. (Highlights | Scorecard)
Same after claiming his second wicket of day -- Mandeep Singh. For the left-arm spinner, the spell of 4-0-18-3 was more of a release of pressure than a performance to celebrate.
Coming into Saturday’s game, in 10 matches he had claimed just three wickets and the analysts had started to measure his performance against his contract amount.
To their credit, Chennai Super Kings have persisted with the all-rounder and batting coach Mike Hussey said their camp was delighted to see Jadeja live up to the confidence shown by captain MS Dhoni in him.
Hussey said the challenge for the team management was to keep Jadeja in a positive frame of mind when things were not going well.
“With Jadeja it’s just about trying to keep him in the positive frame of mind, that’s the nature of T20 cricket. If you look at his role, it’s one of the difficult roles in T20 to play. With the bat, he might often come in with a handful of balls to play and everyone is expecting him to hit two or three sixes, it’s not easy to come in and straightaway hit the ball out of the park. With the ball, he hasn’t got the doosras and the mystery balls, he does what he does and he does it really well. MS has shown in the last few matches that he is keen to keep backing him and we know how good he can be once he gets his confidence up so I was really pleased for him tonight. He hasn’t always had results go his way but tonight he got the result and I’m happy for him,” said Hussey.
Hussey has been one of the guys who has followed Dhoni’s IPL career from close quarters, first as a teammate at the start of the IPL when the CSK captain was at his peak and then a period of struggle. Continuing with his brilliant run, Dhoni produced another fine performance on Saturday both with the bat and his gloves, and the former Australia star batsman was quick to declare that it is the best of Dhoni that we are witnessing.
“My observations are he’s got to be the fastest in the world against the spinners in taking the bails of. He’s unbelievably quick. He’s a fantastic keeper, he’s been in unbelievably good form with the bat, probably the best I’ve seen him play for quite a few years.
“What I like about him, apart from watching him bat, is that a great person on and off the field. He’s very inclusive, tries to enjoy the tournament, gets the young Indian players to just enjoy their cricket. And MS really promotes that. Some days you win, somedays you lose but let’s got out there and enjoy. Let’s play with a smile on our faces.”