Even though Chennai Super Kings did not have the greatest outing in the Indian Premier League in the UAE last year, one player who stood for the franchise with the bat was Ravindra Jadeja, who scored 218 and added the finishing touch that was lacking because of MS Dhoni’s poor form. His strike rate was a staggering 172 in during the last campaign.
Jadeja was selected by Rajasthan Royals in the inaugural season of the IPL in 2008 and played a vital role in winning them the coveted IPL title. Rajasthan captain Shane Warne at the time nicknamed him ‘Rockstar’ and felt Jadeja was a superstar in the making.
He was later picked by Kochi Tuskers for $950,000 in 2011 and a year later, Chennai picked him up for a whopping $2 million and he has since been skipper Dhoni’s go-to man.
- IPL 2021: Straight Bat with Gulf News and Mr. Cricket UAE Anis Sajan - Punjab Kings vs Kolkata Knight Riders
- IPL 2021 Match 22: Royal Challengers Bangalore beat Delhi Capitals by one run — As it happened
- IPL 2021: Sunrisers up against in-form Chennai on slow Delhi wicket
- IPL 2021: How Eoin Morgan revived the Kolkata Knight Riders
Jadeja proved Warne’s words right when he was ranked the No. 1 bowler in ODI cricket in 2013 and also became the top man with the ball in Test cricket alongside Ravichandran Ashwin in 2017.
He has been an integral part of Team India in all formats and has been performing well in all three departments of the game. He has been with Chennai for seven years and has learnt a lot from Dhoni, who he feels has been his mentor. There is no doubt that more often than not Dhoni gets the best out of Jadeja.
In the last IPL match against Royal Challengers Bangalore, Jadeja single-handedly beat Virat Kohli’s team by scoring 62 of just 28 balls and a record 37 runs of the final over bowled by Harshal Patel. He was not done yet, he picked up three wickets for just 13 runs and also created a run out. So much of an impact his performance had on that game that Indian TV sports journalist Jatin Sapru Tweeted: “How about putting him on the points table with 2 points?”
There is no doubt that Jadeja has come off age since the first IPL. No wonder he is called ‘Sir Ravindra’ by his teammates.