Ind vs Aus: Jadeja’s 7-for puts Australia on alert

After a five-month injury Playoff, India’s Ravindra Jadeja is back in action, taking 7-53 in a Ranji Trophy game two weeks before facing Australia. Star allrounder Ravindra Jadeja has made a striking comeback after injury with a seven-wicket haul that should sound the alarm bells for Australia with the Test series against India just a fortnight away. The 34-year-old, whose place in India’s team for the four-Test series commencing on February 9 in Nagpur has been contingent on health, claimed that everything was OK after taking 7-53 from 17.1 overs in his first Ranji Trophy game in over five months after knee surgery.

34-year-old, Jadeja turning it on for Team India

Jadeja's seven-for puts Australia on alert-1

Jadeja bowled 41.1 overs over the two innings, taking eight wickets in total, including an unbroken 12-across stretch on a shifting pitch on Thursday, when Tamil Nadu was bowled out for 133.
The left-arm spinning allrounder, who had previously struck three boundaries in a 15-run cameo with the bat, had stated before the game that he would return to cricket “slowly” following his lengthy absence since his surgery in September.

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“I’m accustomed to bowling extended stints,” he said, according to the Indian news agency PTI. “Nothing new here. I was having fun… the ball was twisting, and the surface was supporting me. When we were batting, the oddball would spin and the oddball would stay low, so I was eager to bowl a lengthy spell. Fortunately, I had wickets.” Asked about his fitness having not played any cricket since India’s Asia Cup encounter with Hong Kong at the end of August, Jadeja claimed he felt “no pain … not really” and that the bowling workload showed him he was “nearly there”.

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He went on to say: “So it’s great to be back in the game after such a long period. Hopefully, I am now ready to travel. A five-for in a first-class game is usually a wonderful thing.” Jadeja, who had surgery after damaging a knee ligament, has been absent longer than at any other point in his career and has faced hurdles on the path to recovery after originally wanting to return for India’s December tour of Bangladesh. He’ll be at the national team training camp in Nagpur, keen to have another look at Australia after capturing 63 Test wickets against them in an eight-year stint, including three five-wicket hauls.

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