Former Indian opener Aakash Chopra has stated that Ravindra Jadeja's knock had altered the course of yesterday's match in Chennai Super Kings' (CSK) favor, an encounter which had seemed to be out of their grasp.
He made this observation while reviewing the MS Dhoni-led side's last-ball IPL 2020 win against the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in a video shared on his YouTube channel.
Aakash Chopra said that Jadeja's bat hitting the ball sounded like music to everyone's ears while pointing out that CSK's win had helped the Mumbai Indians confirm their spot in the IPL 2020 playoffs.
"We could hear Rabindra Sangeet from Jadeja's bat. CSK accumulated two points after winning a lost encounter but gave us the first qualifiers for the playoffs, the Mumbai Indians. Chennai Super Kings are playing the right role of a party pooper."
The reputed commentator observed that the Saurashtra all-rounder's big hits at the end had helped CSK emerge victorious in an encounter that they had almost let slip away from an advantageous position.
"CSK could not have won this match. At one point, it seemed the match had gone out of their grasp. It was in their grasp first, then they let it slip away but then Jaddu came and sent the ball a long distance so many times that he changed the match."
"Everything was going well for CSK with Ruturaj batting well and then first Rayudu played a bad shot and then Varun Chakravarthy dismissed MS Dhoni for the second time in two innings. MS Dhoni has an average of 4.5 against Varun Chakravarthy in IPL 2020."
He highlighted that by the time Jadeja walked in to bat, CSK were down in the dumps, with the required run rate mounting and Sam Curran not being able to play an explosive knock.
"Then the asking rate was climbing. I think Sam Curran was 8 runs off 8 balls at that time and Ruturaj then got out. The match had almost gone out of CSK's hands when Jaddu came to bat."
The former KKR player observed that CSK regained the upper hand in the 19th over bowled by Lockie Ferguson, with 17 runs coming off the last three deliveries after the Kiwi speedster had started the over well.
"There were 30 runs required off 2 overs with Lockie Ferguson bowling the 19th over. He started well with the first three balls but then bowled a full toss which went for a four. The ball had got a little wet and then he bowled a full toss which was also a no-ball and then a six and the game has turned on its head."
He pointed out that Kamlesh Nagarkoti had brought KKR right back in the game in the last over, conceding just 3 runs off his first four deliveries.
"In the last over, they needed 10 runs. Kamlesh Nagarkoti bowled well with CSK needing 7 runs off 2 deliveries with Ravindra Jadeja on strike after only 3 runs were scored off the first four deliveries."
Aakash Chopra lauded Ravindra Jadeja for doing the star turn by smashing the last two deliveries for sixes while opining that CSK had not utilised the all-rounder's batting abilities to the fullest in IPL 2020.
"The game was on but then Jadeja hit a six and then one more six and the game is over. Because of this ability of Jadeja, we were sayng that he should bat up the order. Unfortuntaely, CSK did not make the best use of him but this game was won by one man's short but memorable innings."
Aakash Chopra on Ruturaj Gaikwad's enterprising knock for CSK
Aakash Chopra also had a word of praise for Ruturaj Gaikwad for bouncing back from an inauspicious start to the season and for playing two significant knocks at the top of the order for CSK.
"He has struck fifties in two consecutive matches. His season had not started well. Dhoni also said later that it had taken him 20 days to recover from Covid. And then he played a couple of matches in the middle and got dismissed."
The 43-year-old pointed out that the Maharashtra batsman had turned things around in the last match against RCB after having failed in his first chance as an opener against the Mumbai Indians.
"Then he got a chance to open and there also he got out at the start to Boult. So how much pressure he would have had in such a situation. But the last match against RCB, he won them the match by batting till the end."
Aakash Chopra was particularly effusive in his praise for the shots that the CSK opener played against the express pace of Lockie Ferguson.
"In this match also he batted amazingly well. The one four he hit Lockie straight down the ground was awesome and then a six off a short ball. Take a bow, it was beautiful, I am loving him to bits."
He signed off by observing that Ruturaj Gaikwad's strokeplay and attitude had shown that Indian cricket has a lot of batting talents waiting in the wings.
"He is batting very well. His skill and temperament is telling that India has a golden future in terms of their batting."
Ruturaj Gaikwad scored 72 runs off 53 deliveries for CSK against KKR yesterday to lay the foundation for their run chase. However, just when things had started to go haywire in the middle, with the franchise losing few quick wickets, Ravindra Jadeja turned on his magic and snatched victory from the jaws of defeat.