Ravindra Jadeja Admits England’s Cricket ‘Different’ But ‘Not Difficult to Beat’

Last Updated: February 14, 2024, 12:56 IST

Ravindra Jadeja is expected to play in Rajkot after missing the 2nd Test. (AFP Photo)

Ravindra Jadeja is expected to play in Rajkot after missing the 2nd Test. (AFP Photo)

England have stuck to their aggressive brand of cricket in India and have given their hosts a good fight so far with the Test series currently level at 1-1.

England surely have made quite a statement on the ongoing tour of India where it was expected their ‘Bazball’ brand of Test cricket will face its toughest challenge with few even predicting it to fall flat.

Two Tests into the five-match series and a couple of pre-tour predictions have been put to bed instead. First, the pitches have been nowhere close to the hypothetical minefields as was widely reported and second, England’s aggressive style of play has so far held them in good stead on the Indian tour with the hosts not given an easy run.

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In Hyderabad, England took a shock 1-0 lead but in Vizag, India bounced back to make it 1-1. And India have taken note with their star allrounder calling their style ‘different’, ‘more attacking’ but not something that cannot be bested.

“It’s not difficult to beat England,” Jadeja told reporters on the eve of the 3rd Test to be played in Rajkot. “It’s just that they play cricket differently, a bit more attacking. So it’s about getting used to that and making plans accordingly.”

In the series opener, an epic knock from Ollie Pope who walked the talk of employing both the sweeps – regular and reverse – to counter India spinners and stitched and scored 196 off 278 in the second dig to singlehandedly keep England innings from falling apart. They didn’t curb their attacking intent despite being bundled for 246 in the first innings.

In the second Test though they were outsmarted by the genius of Jasprit Bumrah who laid out a breathtaking exhibition of reverse swing to finish with nine wickets in the contest and drag his team to series-leveling win.

The win would have boosted India’s confidence and they will be perked up by the return of allrounder Ravindra Jadeja too who missed the second Test due to a hamstring issue.

“Body will return to rhythm after playing for one-two days,” Jadeja said of his fitness.

India have a few greenhorns in their Test squad with Rajat Patidar making his Test debut in Vizag and there’s buzz around the duo of Sarfaraz Khan and Dhruv Jurel making their international debuts in Vizag.

“All these new boys have been playing First-Class cricket regularly, pakke pakkaya players hai. Kabhi na kabhi ye time aana hi tha (They were all ready, India call-up was inevitable). Its good for them to start their career on home soil,” Jadeja said.

Meanwhile, Ravichandran Ashwin is just a wicket away from completing 500 wickets in Test cricket and Jadeja is hopeful his partner-in-crime will get to the milestone in his hometown.

“Very excited for Ashwin close to 500 wickets. I thought he would complete in first Test but whatever is in destiny… he will now complete in my hometown Rajkot,” Jadeja said.

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