Home > Features >

Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja can unleash their potential in swapped roles

Ravichandran Ashwin has done better with the bat in the ongoing ODI series against New Zealand © Getty Images
Ravichandran Ashwin has done better with the bat in the ongoing ODI series against New Zealand © Getty Images

Ravichandran Ashwin came in as a fine off-spinner and Ravindra Jadeja made an entry as the ideal batting all-rounder. Few matches down the line, the roles have been unintentionally swapped and there is a strong case for a strategy rethinking to do for India to extract optimum talent. Abhijit Banare explains why it makes sense in considering Ashwin as the ideal batting all-rounder in ODIs and the other way round for Jadeja.

Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja were in the thick of action in the tied third One-Day International (ODI) against New Zealand for their batting performances. The all-rounder’s slot has for long been a slot of identity crisis for India. With that slot being a vital aspect especially in limited overs format, India haven’t managed to work it out and have depended upon how the performances have unfolded. Ashwin has long been criticised for his dry run with wickets while Jadeja has been criticised for the lack of runs. Perhaps this issue could be dealt with if Ashwin is given more importance for his bowling and Jadeja more for his bowling. Following are some of the arguments on the same:

a) Ashwin has a stronger batting technique

The only thing you could dislike about Ashwin’s batting is that he walks out at No 8. But that way he goes about playing his innings is a delightful watch. The gracious flick with perfect timing fills the void of watching that famous VVS Laxman flick from outside the off-stump. And Ashwin is adept at facing a delivery which many of his fellow players have miserably failed to deal with — THE SHORT BALL! Ashwin has also looked extremely comfortable against the short ball rolling his wrists over it the way Dhoni does, and the best aspect about his batting is that he has plenty of time to play his shots even against the fastest of deliveries.

In comparison, Jadeja has been caught prodding at away going deliveries on many occasions. Jadeja can loft the ball at will and is a high-risk player. In comparison, Ashwin is a much stable batsman and one can rely on him occupying the crease and keep the runs coming in singles and twos. Though Jadeja has managed to score back-to-back half-centuries, Ashwin could still be a good option higher up the order, which they did use in the fourth ODI.

b) Jadeja’s pace and line are better than Ashwin’s finger variations

Ashwin is a finger spinner who relies on foxing the batsman with his turn, whereas Jadeja depends a lot on mixing the pace of his deliveries and luring the batsman submission. While both these strategies have been successful at home, Ashwin’s variations (especially the carrom ball) have been blunted overseas whereas Jadeja has continued to find success with his change of pace.

Ravindra Jadeja (above) has taken more wickets than Ravichandran Ashwin in the current ODI series against New Zealand © Getty Images
Ravindra Jadeja (above) has taken more wickets than Ravichandran Ashwin in the current ODI series against New Zealand © Getty Images

c) Jadeja isn’t perceived to be a wicket-taking bowler

Many opposition teams look forward to tackling Ashwin, who has been MS Dhoni‘s trump card in limited overs. On the other hand, it’s Jadeja who creates more wicket-taking opportunities by tying down the batsmen with his deliveries that are darted in and suffocate the batsmen. In contrast, the batsmen like to take their chances against Ashwin more than Jadeja. As mentioned earlier Jadeja who relies more on the pace than turn is much more effective on featherbeds where the wickets don’t offer much.

d) Temperament

Here’s another distinguishing factor. Jadeja, who is time and again associated with three triple centuries when he comes out to bat, has a poor temperament. There have been a few situations where he has failed to play according to the situation, the most recent example being the second Test against South Africa where he was supposoed to hold the innings together and instead he chose to slog and get out early. In comparison, Ashwin is a workhorse when it comes to batting with an equally impressive defence. During the Kolkata Test against West Indies, Ashwin’s patience and technique had emerged successful under pressure. It is the team’s loss not using his abilities well in ODI cricket by not bringing him up the order.

Coming to the bowling, here Jadeja is on a higher ground than Ashwin.  Once attacked at the start, Ashwin gets unsettled and his rhythm is spoilt whereas Jadeja has the ability to bowl consistently in the same areas.

Ashwin has always possessed a sound batting technique and it was just a matter of time it was used well by the team management whereas Jadeja can still be retained to finish the innings thanks to his aggressive style. It would be interesting to see how their roles unfold in the months ahead leading up to the world cup.

(Abhijit Banare is a reporter at CricketCountry. He is an avid quizzer and loves to analyse and dig out interesting facts which allows him to learn something new every day. Apart from cricket he also likes to keep a sharp eye on Indian politics, and can be followed on Twitter and blog)

World T20 League 2014

Oct 2, 2014 (16:00 IST)   at Hyderabad

World T20 League 2014

Oct 2, 2014 (20:00 IST)   at Hyderabad

West Indies tour of India 2014, Practice match

Oct 3, 2014 (09:00 IST)   at Mumbai

Matador BBQs One-Day Cup, 2014

Oct 4, 2014 (05:00 IST)   at Woolloongabba, Brisbane

Matador BBQs One-Day Cup, 2014

Oct 4, 2014 (05:00 IST)   at Brisbane

More

World T20 League 2014

Sep 30, 2014  at Bengaluru

Barbados won by 6 wkts (D/L method)

World T20 League 2014

Sep 30, 2014  at Bengaluru

Perth Scorchers won by 3 wkts

World T20 League 2014

Sep 29, 2014  at Hyderabad

Kolkata Knight Riders won by 36 runs

World T20 League 2014

Sep 28, 2014  at Mohali

Kings XI Punjab won by 7 wkts

World T20 League 2014

Sep 28, 2014  at Mohali

Hobart Hurricanes won by 6 wkts

Photos

KKR vs Dolphins, CLT20 2014

Videos

Arjuna Ranatunga shares his views on U-19 cricket

Bangladesh vs Sri Lanka Live Cricket Score Asian Games 2014 semi-final: Rain interrupts play

Kolkata Knight Riders vs Hobart Hurricanes, 1st Semi final, CLT20 2014: Hobart likely XI

Kings XI Punjab vs Chennai Super Kings, 2nd Semifinal, CLT20 2014: CSK likely XI

Gandhi Jayanti: Mahatma Gandhi’s cricket connections and an XI

Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) vs Chennai Super Kings (CSK), 2nd Semifinal, CLT20 2014: KXIP likely XI

Asian Games Asian Games 2014 Barbados Tridents Cape Cobras Champions League T20 2014 CLT20 CLT20 2014 Dolphins India at Asian Games 2014 Kings XI Punjab KKR vs Dolphins Kolkata Knight Riders

Australia undergo grueling practice session ahead of UAE tour

Live Scorecard: Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) vs Hobart Hurricanes, 1st Semi final, CLT20 2014

Live Cricket Score: Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) vs Hobart Hurricanes, 1st Semi final, CLT20 2014

Live Streaming: Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) vs Hobart Hurricanes, 1st Semi final, CLT20 2014

HPCA still awaits security clearance for India-West Indies 4th ODI

Chennai Super Kings (CSK) vs Kings XI Punjab (KXIP), CLT20 2014 2nd semi-final: Key battles

Australia’s ODI team faces a dilemma for the first time in 30 years

Kolkata Knight Riders vs Hobart Hurricanes, 1st Semi final, CLT20 2014: Hobart likely XI

Kings XI Punjab vs Chennai Super Kings, 2nd Semifinal, CLT20 2014: CSK likely XI

Gandhi Jayanti: Mahatma Gandhi’s cricket connections and an XI

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

671 Posts | 6 Fans

Kolkata Knight Riders vs Kings XI Punjab- Final Match Highlights from IPL 2014

iOS 8 reportedly causing Bluetooth connectivity issues: Report

Internet in Iran, a daily struggle against censorship

Asian Games 2014: Indian men’s kabaddi team in 7th consecutive final

Chennai Super Kings (CSK) vs Kings XI Punjab (KXIP), CLT20 2014 2nd semi-final: Key battles

NGOs pursue education for all

Devotees perform Kumari puja across Bengal

Ebola in Liberia: First staffer dies of ‘probable’ Ebola, says UN

Bang Bang movie review: Hrithik Roshan and Katrina Kaif’s chemistry makes this action flick worth watching!

Revealed: Sonam Kapoor looking daintier than ever for Prem Ratan Dhan Payo!

Asian Games 2014 Live Updates: Defending Champions India through to Kabaddi Finals of both men and women events respectively

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here