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Sanjay Manjrekar praises Ravindra Jadeja for his fine knock in the Boxing Day Test

Ravindra Jadeja in action during the Boxing Day test
Ravindra Jadeja in action during the Boxing Day test
Modified 28 Dec 2020, 12:46 IST

Former Indian cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar heaped praise on all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja for his superb innings under pressure in the Boxing day Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).

The 55-year-old felt Jadeja finally seems to be doing justice to his fantastic first-class record by dishing out consistent performances with the bat in Tests.

Ravindra Jadeja played some match-winning knocks in the limited-overs leg of India's tour Down Under. However, Test cricket is a different ball-game altogether. Adding to it, the 32-year-old came out to bat in a tough situation when the visitors were still trailing by 22 runs.

However, he formed a fantastic partnership with stand-in skipper Ajinkya Rahane that handed Team India the advantage in the Test. Adding 121 runs for the sixth wicket, the duo took the visitors' lead past 100 runs. After Rahane's dismissal, Jadeja brought up his half-century as well.

Speaking on Sony Sports Network, Manjrekar explained how Ravindra Jadeja grew in confidence as a batsman over the years, especially when Ravichandran Ashwin wasn't getting enough runs down the order.

“Things changed after 2015 with Ravindra Jadeja -- the batsman. It was also the time when Ashwin was batting before him, Ashwin had four Test hundreds and Jadeja had nothing. Jadeja was competing with Ashwin as the spinner in the side. Ashwin’s batting dropped, Jadeja’s batting sort of skyrocketed. This guy always had a great first-class record and finally, when he got his number, he felt ‘Wow, let me make most of it'."

Something changed for Ravindra Jadeja in the past four years: Sanjay Manjrekar

Ravindra Jadeja celebrates after scoring his half-century.
Ravindra Jadeja celebrates after scoring his half-century.

Manjrekar was particularly impressed with the patience Ravindra Jadeja showed while he was at the crease with Rahane. He was willing to dig deep and wear down the Australian bowlers while his captain put the bad balls away at the other end.

Ravindra Jadeja also showed great application against the second new ball and wasn't phased by the accuracy of the Australian pace battery. This, according to Manjrekar, has been one of the biggest positives in the all-rounder's batting.

“The early part he was playing as Test all-rounder of sort, his bowling was fine but his batting for a couple of years had become a bit of harakiri. Something changed in the last 4 years. He is getting behind the ball, leaving balls, even today against a quality bowling attack, he did not throw his wicket to avoid the fast bowlers before the second new ball was taken,” said Manjrekar on Sunday.

Team India got bowled out for 326, having taken a 131-run lead in their first innings. With such a sizeable lead, the Indian bowlers will look to attack the Aussies and bowl them out as soon as possible.

Published 28 Dec 2020, 12:46 IST
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