Driving assessment

Ravindra Jadeja on England pacer’s assessment of changing his stick

Ravindra Jadeja spoke about his first century of testing abroad in England as James Anderson assessed what had changed for him

Photo: AP

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Ravindra Jadeja marked a magnificent century, his first in a test abroad
  • James Anderson, who eventually fired Jadeja, was asked why Jadeja improved as a hitter
  • Jadeja was quick to respond while recalling the infamous 2014 incident

Ravindra Jadeja has been one of the most improved hitters for India over the past few years, especially in Test cricket. Jadeja’s white ball game is known to all but his improved defense and consistency as a red ball hitter not only helped India at crucial times to salvage a few games, but his late runs have been the engine of certain victories.

Whether it’s MCG 2020 or his 50th birthday last year at Trent Bridge against England and Kanpur against New Zealand or his career best 175 against Sri Lanka earlier this year, Jadeja has probably been the best hitter whatever the conditions. Now, at Edgbaston too, Jadeja came at a critical moment when half the team were back in the clubhouse for the score below 100.

Rishabh Pant may have walked away with all the applause, and deservedly so, but it was Jadeja’s innings that were the wind under the wings of the wicketkeeper batter. Jadeja’s toughness, patience, and sheer discipline at the test match bat kept Pant having fun, and both hitters ended up hitting the triple-digit mark.

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Jadeja’s first century of overseas testing was ended by James Anderson, who in the past had duels with the all-rounder, the most famous, rather infamous, being the Trent Bridge fiasco in 2014 when the pacer veteran was charged with a level 3 violation of the ICC code. of Conduct after India alleged he pushed the all-rounder into the pavilion.

Although 8 years have passed since the incident, it is still a not so happy memory for everyone involved and Jadeja has made sure no one forgets it even in 2022.

During the post-match press conference on Day 2, Anderson was asked about the change in Jadeja’s batting that drifted the returns with the bat for him and he said, “In the past, he would come at 8, bats with his tail so he had to risk his arm a bit. Whereas now, at 7, he can hit like a real hitter. He starts very well and made it difficult for us.

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Asked about his reaction to Anderson’s assessment of changing his bat over the past few years, Jadeja said: “You see, when you score runs, everyone says he considers himself a good hitter. But I’ve always tried to give myself time in the enclosure, to partner with whoever’s in the enclosure, to play with them. It’s good that Jimmy Anderson realized that after 2014… so I’m happy.”

Jadeja’s 104-point shot and the late return of substitute skipper Jasprit Bumrah helped India post a whopping 416 points in the first leg.