“India need to try out Ravindra Jadeja whether India opt for one spinner or two,” veteran London-based cricket broadcaster and writer Ashis Ray advocated on Friday.
India play Sri Lanka in their final league match in the ongoing World Cup at Headingley in Leeds on Saturday.
Ray said: “Jadeja should not be thrown in cold into a semi-final in case he is required. Moreover, he deserves to play since Kuldeep Yadav has captured very few wickets and Yuzvendra Chahal has lately proved to be expensive. In any case, unless you have an exceptional wrist spinner like Shane Warne, a finger spinner like Jadeja is generally preferred on English wickets.”
He further pointed out: “Jadeja is the best fielder in the Indian team. On his day he can also be destructive as a batsman.”
“I would recall Kedar Jadhav to cover all bases. His round arm off-spin will complement Jadeja. He got a 50 when it was desperately needed in the Afghanistan match and didn’t deserve to be dropped,” he added.
“I would stick to three specialist quicks plus Hardik Pandya,” Ray added. “Headingley normally helps faster bowlers. In the three matches in the current World Cup pacers have taken 33 wickets compared to 15 by spinners.”
Ray has written a history of the tournament from an Indian perspective, ‘Cricket World Cup: The Indian Challenge’, published by Bloomsbury. The book contains a preview of the current championship, which emphasises that India have the potential to lift the trophy.
Ray’s book has match reports on every single Indian appearance in the World Cup. It has a lengthy chapter on India’s fairy tale triumph in 1983.