“Lovely sign for Indian cricket”


Team India off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin has termed Ravindra Jadeja’s seven-wicket haul on his return to domestic cricket in the Ranji Trophy as a heartening sign for Indian cricket.

The all-rounder was out of action after he suffered a freak knee injury during the Asia Cup in UAE in August and subsequently underwent a surgery. The 34-year-old has been named in the Indian squad for the first two Tests of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy against Australia, but his inclusion is subject to fitness.

Jadeja decided to prove his fitness by leading Saurashtra in their round seven game of the ongoing Ranji Trophy at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai. While the left-hander was dismissed for 15 & 25, he claimed 7-53 in 17.1 overs in the second innings.

Sharing his views on Jadeja’s return to competitive cricket, Ashwin said on his YouTube channel:

“Things are turning around. Who are going to return – Ravindra Jadeja and Jasprit Bumrah. Jadeja came to his second home in Chepauk to test his fitness and play a Ranji Trophy game. Jadeja has picked up a seven-fer for Saurashtra against Tamil Nadu.”

He continued:

“This is the home ground for Jadeja when he turns out for CSK. But this is also Tamil Nadu’s home ground. He has picked seven wickets in the second innings. This is a lovely sign for Indian cricket. He will also enter scheme of things for the ODI World Cup.”

Despite Jadeja’s bowling heroics, Saurashtra went down to Tamil Nadu by 59 runs at the Chepauk. Chasing a target of 266, they were bowled out for 206 in 68.2 overs despite Harvik Desai’s resilient 101.

“Kuldeep has taken his game a notch higher” – Ashwin impressed with India’s spin-bowling resources

While Jadeja’s return will strengthen the team, Ashwin feels India have a very strong spin-bowling department heading into the ODI World Cup at home. Reflecting on the Men in Blue’s riches in spin bowling, Ashwin said:

“Axar Patel has taken a break for his marriage. So, Axar Patel will return as well. Washington Sundar has done decently well too. Kuldeep Yadav has had an extraordinary run. Kul-Cha combination returned in the last ODI (against New Zealand). But Kuldeep has taken his game a notch higher. He has put his hand up and said, ‘I am here to stay. If you need a wrist-spinner, pick me, I say’.”

Kuldeep was the joint-leading wicket-taker in the ODIs against New Zealand, claiming six scalps in three games at an average of 22.33.

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Edited by Renin Wilben Albert

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