India have won a Test series in England on only three occasions – in 1971 (under Ajit Wadekar’s captaincy), in 1986 (under Kapil Dev’s captaincy), and in 2007 (under Rahul Dravid’s captaincy).
After 2007, India toured England three times – in 2011, 2014, and 2018 – but failed to clinch the series.
The tourists in fact were in a great position to win the first Test in Nottingham, needing 157 runs on the final day, with 9 wickets in hand. But persistent rain intervened to wash out Day 5 and deny India a chance to win the Test and go up 1-0 in the 5 Test series.
However, there are still four Tests left to play and Indian all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja feels the current Indian team has a big chance to win in England this time.
Jadeja spoke to TimesofIndia.com before the Test series vs England began.
“Yes, definitely, we won twice in Australia back-to-back. Now we are in England and the conditions are totally different from those in Australia. Here, the ball swings a lot and you have to play accordingly. You have to be very smart in your game. You have to play close to the body, not like in Australia, where you can play your shots from the first ball. That’s how we have to plan. If we prepare well and focus, then we have a very good chance this time,” Jadeja told TimesofIndia.com in an exclusive interview.
India will now face England in the second Test beginning on August 12 at Lord’s. The third (Aug 25 – Aug 29) will be played at Headingley, the fourth (Sep 02 – Sep 06) at Kennington Oval, and the fifth and last Test (Sep 10 – Sep 14) at Old Trafford.
“I think we have a big bright chance to win this series this time because we have a very good team. As far as batting, bowling, and fast bowling are concerned, we have a very good and balanced team. So, yes, we have a good chance to win the series in England,” Jadeja said.
JADEJA AND THE ART OF BEING A GOOD FIELDER
With his electrifying fielding, stunning diving catches, and the ability to rattle the stumps with bullet throws, Jadeja has time and again proved that he is the best in the business when it comes to fielding.
But how does he maintain such high fielding standards?
Ravindra Jadeja (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
“Yes, I am one of the best fielders in the world. But I don’t take anything for granted, I keep working on my game and my fitness. I do a lot of shoulder exercises and running for that, for instance. That’s how I maintain my fitness, which helps me on the field,” Jadeja told TimesofIndia.com.
Since Virat Kohli took over as India captain, the bar has been set very high as far as the level of fitness in the team is concerned.
“Virat definitely has been very enthusiastic, proactive, and fit. He believes a lot in fitness as well, so everyone has to raise their fielding standards. Everyone in the team has been working on their fitness, that’s why you can see the difference on the field now,” the 32 year old, who has played 53 Tests, 168 ODIs and 50 T20Is for India so far said.
THE T20 WORLD CUP GOAL
Over the years, since he first burst onto the stage as a young gun, Ravindra Jadeja has evolved into a very effective all-rounder. What makes him an asset for any captain is his ability to turn the match with his all-round skills, regardless of format.
Later this year, India will technically be hosting the next edition of the ICC T20 World Cup, in the UAE and Oman, due to the COVID-19 situation.
Ravindra Jadeja (Image credit: Ryan Persie/Getty Images)
Jadeja will of course walk into the Indian team for that tournament. India haven’t won the ICC T20 World Cup title, since winning the inaugural edition in 2007, under MS Dhoni’s captaincy and Jadeja is aiming at putting in his everything to try and help India win the title for a second time.
“Definitely, it’s a good opportunity for me to make my team win this time in the T20 World Cup. Whenever I get an opportunity, I try to give my 100%. I feel good representing my country in a big sporting event like the World Cup. It’s a special feeling.” Jadeja, who has scored over 4000 international runs and taken 448 international wickets told TimesofIndia.com.
JADEJA’S LOVE FOR FOOTBALL
Jadeja’s love for horses is no secret. He often posts photos and videos of himself, riding horses, on his social media accounts. When he has time, he also likes to follow football.
“Apart from cricket, I do follow football a little bit, although not much. I try to spend time with my family when not playing or training,” he said.
Image credit: Ravindra Jadeja’s Twitter handle
Jadeja also recently added another endorsement deal to his list, signing as brand ambassador for Gujarat based Marwadi University.
“It seemed a very natural fit to be honest. What connected us was our roots being Saurashtra-based and the humble beginnings. It is highly commendable that Marwadi University has risen up to my expectations as well as to the community at large. I personally feel the institution has a great state-of-the-art infrastructure and some of the best practices in higher education. Also, they have dedicated facilities and coaches for sports which helps in the engagement of a young mind. This was something that interested me a lot. The philosophy of the management resonates in the learning environment promoting value-based education, social responsibilities, and a good citizen,” Jadeja signed off.