Ravindra Jadeja: Six wickets in South Africa was an answer to the critics
Ravindra Jadeja picked up six wickets in the second Test at Durban © AFP

 

New Delhi: Feb 22, 2014

 

India’s bowling coach Joe Dawes had earlier mentioned that he wants Ravindra Jadeja to be the next Wasim Akram.

 

Jadeja said, “It’s huge that they think I can do something for the team. His thought was that if there is a seaming wicket and there is no spin, I could play the role of the fourth fast bowler. He was mentally preparing me for this and even made me practice in the nets.”

 

The tour of South Africa was a successful one for the Indian all-rounder.

 

Answering his critics, Jadeja said, “People always comment — he takes wickets only in India, on outside wickets the ball is not going to turn etc. God knows what happiness they get out of it, so the six wickets I took in South Africa was an answer to them.”

 

“In One-Days I did okay – got a 30 and then 27-28, so I don’t think there’s a problem in my batting technique. In Tests, when I got out in the last innings I had gone with the intention of standing and delivering, but it didn’t happen, so I was unlucky. Will try harder next time,” he was quoted as saying by FHM India.

 

Speaking about the poor away Test matches record compared to home series, he said, “A series is a series, and they all are important. All of us played good cricket in South Africa although we couldn’t win, but it’s not like we are only lions at home.”

 

“[Cheteshwar] Pujara got a 100, so did Virat [Kohli]… everyone made runs. Plus, I don’t think the New Zealand bowling attack is as good as South Africa’s, so we can do better against them.”

 

“We take each match one by one. It’s not like we just say ‘Win 5 out of 5 matches’. We make team strategy, look at matches one after the other and look at winning the first 3. If we do that, then we are in a better position mentally.”

 

Jadeja said he never imagined that he would be the number one bowler and he doesn’t check rankings.

 

“I didn’t even know about the rankings and only saw on Twitter that I had become No 1! It’s true though that I never imagined I’d be the No 1 bowler.”

 

The southpaw said that he was happy to be back in the Chennai Super Kings camp.

 

He said, “Our management group knows a lot about cricket and they don’t put any pressure on us, plus, we’ve won the IPL, Champions League already so there is no pressure.”

 

When asked whether he remembers the time when he was banned from playing in IPL, Jadeja said, “Not really. Also, for me, cricket is cricket. I just came back from playing a match for the district and I play at any level — IPL, Indian Team or District Match.”

 

Jadeja has opened up about the ‘Sir’ title that people have given him. He told that someone started it on Twitter during the last Indian Premier League (IPL) and people picked it up.

 

“Someone started it on Twitter during the last IPL and people picked it up. As long as it’s funny, I don’t mind. I don’t follow too many people, so have no clue who’s saying what. People mention me, but I don’t take it too seriously. There are absolutely hilarious ones online — though during IPL and then the Rajnikanth ones,” Jadeja said.

 

When asked about being compared with Rajnikanth, Jadeja said, “Someone tweeted that I gave an award to my school principal. I loved it. I do read things sometimes when they pop up, but I’m not too active.”

 

Apart from cricket, Jadeja is fond of cars and horses.

 

“The restaurant I started last year is also doing well and I’m not that fond of cars. I’ve bought a Hayabusa, but don’t get time to ride it though. I’m passionate about horses, so I spend my time there. I have three horses on my farm and I love riding, but no derbies,” the Indian all-rounder said.

 

The 25-year-old recently got engaged but doesn’t plan to get married in the next two years.

 

He said, “There are no plans of marriage for the next two years.”

 

Speaking about his female fans, Jadeja concluded, “Everyone has fans. There are some who send flowers, cards and all that or send messages… but that’s all.”