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08 January, 2021

Jadeja, Gill Pull Sessions And Hope Back In India's Favour


Ravindra Jadeja and Shubman Gill were the cornerstone of Team India's progress on the second day of the 3rd Test at the Sydney cricket Ground.

Both are part of a list of sports talent managed by Mumbai-based talent management agency Cornerstone.

Marvel Spider-ManInitially it was Jadeja who shone on the field as bowler and fielder. He showed that a bowler can earn wickets with accuracy when there's no turn and bounce in the pitch.

He also gave a lesson on how a bowler can strive and succeed in winning leg before and bowled decisions if you suspect your wicketkeeper may drop catches (Rishabh Pant, who dropped Aussie debutant Will Pucovski twice on the opening day, ended up not earning a catch or stumping in Australia's first innings batting).

Nicknamed Rockstar or Sir Jadeja as Mahendra Singh Dhoni would fondly refer him, the allrounder was key to restrict Australia to 338 all out with his 4 for 62.

In an innings when Ravichandran Ashwin ended wicketless, Jadeja's contribution from the other end was priceless.

"...before every over, my thinking was to bowl in good areas, the fast bowlers were bowling well, so my thinking was to keep the pressure from one side and not leak runs," Cricbuzz quoted Jadeja saying.

January Sale! Save up to 20% OFF on Selected Kits!Later, Gill won the hearts of several former Australian players now commentating with his no-frills, ease of batting. The Punjab lad achieved his maiden Test 50 in his second Test outing, indicating he belongs in the India Test 11 for the long haul.

Both Jadeja and Gill have been early bloomers. Both played crucial roles in helping their team win the junior World Cup trophy.

Jadeja starred for the 2008-09 India under-19 World Cup team. He was the vice-captain and impressed as a bowler claiming 10 wickets in 6 matches at an average of 13.

Ten years later, in 2018-19, Gill stepped into the India under-19 World Cup team, also as vice-captain. He smashed 372 runs at an average of 124.00 to earn the Player of the Tournament title. 

His 102 not out against archrival Pakistan in that World Cup semi-final brought him into limelight as he received praise from legends Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman and Sourav Ganguly among others.

Jadeja and Gill's hunting in pairs has helped skipper Ajinkya Rahane and India overcome the first day worries of rain and Pant's poor performance behind the wickets.

From India's perspective, the duo also outshone Steve Smith's return to batting form with a dogged 131. The star Aussie batsman could have taken sessions and the game away from India had it not been Jadeja again who saw the back of Smith in one fell swoop of run-pick-aim at one stump.

With Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara at the crease, India have the most experienced Test batsmen to shoulder responsibility and guide their team into a dominant position by the end of Day Three.

The pitch is not offering much assistance. And with their collective expertise, Rahane and Pujara should be able to get the better of Pat Cummins and Nathan Lyon, both of whom bowled excellently on the second day as well as Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Cameron Green.

The chirp and chatter by the Aussies, led by their skipper Tim Paine has increased. Both, Rahane and Pujara are known for being calm and composed. Team India fans believe these two will remain unruffled by jibes from the opposition and get rid of the 242 runs their team trails by, session by session.

Should these two succeed in their endeavor, the batsmen to follow -Hanuma Vihari, Pant, Jadeja, Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah, Navdeep Saini and Mohammed Siraj will then be able to throw their bat around and log valuable additional runs to put the Aussies under pressure.