STOCK MARKET BSE NSE

If you are playing four fast bowlers, Ravindra Jadeja has to be first-choice spinner: Harbhajan Singh

Harbhajan Singh feels that Ravindra Jadeja, with 221 wickets in 52 matches, can never be clubbed as a second choice spinner.

Published: 04th August 2021 09:36 PM  |   Last Updated: 04th August 2021 09:36 PM   |  A+A-

India's Ravindra Jadeja chases the ball to save a boundary during the first day of first Test cricket match between England and India, at Trent Bridge in Nottingham.

India's Ravindra Jadeja chases the ball to save a boundary during the first day of first Test cricket match between England and India, at Trent Bridge in Nottingham. (Photo | AP)

By PTI

NEW DELHI: On seaming English tracks where spinners are going to be used sparingly, Ravindra Jadeja, with his restrictive wicket-to-wicket bowling and superior batting, was always going to trump number one tweaker, Ravichandran Ashwin, feels former India spinner Harbhajan Singh.

Ashwin, who picked up six wickets for Surrey in his last first-class game, was on Wednesday excluded for the first Test against England, as India went in with four fast bowlers.

"I guess if you would have played Ashwin, the tail would have been very long. You didn't know how much spin in fact will be used. Jaddu has bowled three out of 50 overs till tea.

"So overs that you will use spin, Jaddu can bowl those overs. And why do we jump to conclusion that Jaddu can't be used as a lone spinner," Harbhajan told PTI.

"And if you look at overseas performances, Jaddu has been a better batsman and has a solid presence in the lower order," Harbhajan, who has played more than 100 Tests for India, said.

Harbhajan feels that Jadeja, with 221 wickets in 52 matches, can never be clubbed as a second choice spinner, at least in overseas conditions where he can bat at No.7.

"And is it so that Jaddu hasn't taken wickets? It's the first Test of the series, you want to win but at the same time, you would like to also have your defence prepared. You don't want to concede advantage on batting front and I feel it's fine if the team management thinks that way."

But isn't it a negative thought process to drop Ashwin, who has 400 plus wickets? "Ideally, if you think that Ashwin is your front-line spinner then he should have played. But if the team management feels that Ashwin's presence makes the lower middle order a bit light, then perhaps they should be allowed to explore that angle too."

When it comes to overseas conditions, Jadeja, according to Harbhajan, is as good as Ashwin.

"If you look at overseas records, there isn't much to choose between Ash and Jaddu. Yes, you would feel hard done by if you have just picked six wickets for Surrey. But the considerations of Test cricket are different.

"Obviously, with six wickets in last first-class game, he was bound to be confident. But you also don't want a situation, where you are 75 for 5 and Ashwin is walking into bat."

He recently scored a hundred in Chennai on a different track? "Chennai hundred was a different innings on a different track. Here the lower order players may struggle totalling 100 runs across five innings. So Chennai hundred can't be an indicator of playing him as an all-rounder at Trent Bridge."

The moment one picks four fast or seam bowlers, Harbhajan feels that the "workload is evenly shared" and all you need is tight lines from the overs that your spinner bowls.

"This surface in any case will not offer great turn. So if turn is not on offer, then play a guy, who can bat better and make the tail look a bit longer," Harbhajan signed off.



Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

edexworks
flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp