Former Australia all-rounder Tom Moody was effusive in his praise of Ravindra Jadeja for showcasing a defensive side to his batting. The India all-rounder scored a gritty 159-ball 57 in a sixth-wicket partnership of 121 runs in the visitors’ first innings of the ongoing Boxing Day Test against the Aussies.
Coming off the white-ball leg of the series in which Ravindra Jadeja was at his explosive best, finishing many innings with a flourish, the 32-year-old was a fountain of grit and resoluteness in the second Test. With India placed in a tricky position on 173 for 5, both Ravindra Jadeja and stand-in skipper Ajinkya Rahane ensured India didn’t lose a wicket in the final session of Day 2.
Their partnership went beyond 100 in the first hour of Day 3, which in turn helped India take a 131-run first innings lead. In an interview with ESPNcricinfo, Tom Moody shed light on Ravindra Jadeja’s “robust defence” – something that was missing in India’s entire line-up during their collapse of 36 all out in the Adelaide Test.
“It’s been a very good innings, no question about it. The most impressive thing for me throughout the whole innings was his robust defence. And to me, that is an area, if I was looking at Jadeja, and what he’s done previously is shown vulnerability from a defensive point of view,” Moody said.
‘Ravindra Jadeja showed great composure in defence,’ says Moody
India ended Day 3 on top as Australia were reeling with four wickets remaining and a lead of just one run. After helping India cross the 300-run mark in Tests for the first time in seven innings, Ravindra Jadeja accounted for the well-set Matthew Wade and Australia captain Tim Paine to leave the hosts on 133 for 6.
Ravindra Jadeja inevitably makes the playing XI in all home Tests. Tom Moody opined the all-rounder’s “maturity” will enable India to now play Rishabh Pant and him at No. 6 and 7 respectively for Test matches in any part of the world.
“To me, he showed great composure in defence. He also showed that he had the ability to play the long game in the sense that he was prepared to be patient and let the ball go well. And there was an enormous amount of maturity,” Moody, who scored 1667 runs and picked 50 wickets from 8 Tests and 76 ODIs, added.
“Does he fit in the side with Pant and him at six and seven? He certainly does. That’s a good enough top seven for me in Test cricket, if he’s [Ravindra Jadeja] playing with that type of maturity,” the member of Australia’s 1999 World Cup-winning side, concluded.
Since 2016, Ravindra Jadeja boasts a batting and bowling average of 46.29 and 24.97 respectively. With a difference of 21.32, the Indian star is above the likes of Ben Stokes, Shakib Al Hasan, and Jason Holder.
Published 28 Dec 2020, 14:43 IST