Ashwin will complete his 500 wickets in my hometown Rajkot: Ravindra Jadeja

Tags: England tour of India 2024, India, England, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindrasinh Anirudhsinh Jadeja

Published on: Feb 14, 2024

Indian all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja has stated that his long-time spin partner Ravichandran Ashwin is destined to reach 500 Test wickets at his home town in Rajkot. Jadeja expressed happiness and excitement over his spin partner’s impending milestone.

The third Test between India and England begins in Rajkot from Thursday, February 15 onwards. Ashwin has 499 Test wickets from 97 Test matches at an excellent average of 23.92. In a pre-match press conference ahead of the third Test, Jadeja asserted, "He [Ashwin] will definitely complete his 500 wickets on this ground. I am very excited because I have been playing with him for 12-13 years and to achieve this milestone of completing 500 Test wickets is a really big thing.”

"I thought he would complete it in the first Test but it's okay, whatever is written in destiny… he will complete his 500 wickets in Rajkot, in my hometown," the 35-year-old added.

As expected, a strong and experienced England side has given India a tough challenge. They came back strongly to win the first Test in Hyderabad by 28 runs. The hosts fought hard to level the series 1-1, with a 106-run win in Visakhapatnam. Asked for his thoughts on England, Jadeja said, "I won't say they are difficult because their style of playing cricket is aggressive. In all these years, whichever team has come they have not found it easy to come to India, play on the Indian wickets and win in Indian conditions.

"But in this series, even the first Test that we lost, we had taken a lead of 190 runs and from there we slipped. In the second innings, due to small mistakes we lost the game. It is not that England are difficult to beat but they play with a different style and it takes some time to understand that. Once you understand their style and approach we can plan our game accordingly," the all-rounder added.

With KL Rahul injured, Virat Kohli unavailable and Shreyas Iyer dropped, India are likely to bring in a couple of debutants for the third Test. Sarfaraz Khan could get his much awaited chance, while Dhruv Jurel might also come in for KS Bharat. Barring skipper Rohit Sharma and Jadeja himself, there is a lot of inexperience in the Indian batting line-up. Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill and Rajat Patidar are still trying to establish themselves in red-ball cricket.

"All these new boys are coming into the side on the back of playing a lot of first-class cricket. It is not that they are in after one or a half season and have come into the Test side. These are seasoned players, they know how to play long innings and have an idea how it goes in Test cricket,” a confident Jadeja replied, when asked about the possibility of fielding a different looking batting line-up.

Meanwhile, the Rajkot game will also mark England captain Ben Stokes’ 100th Test as captain.

--By A Cricket Correspondent

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