2018 England Tour 'Changed Everything For Me' - Ravindra Jadeja Remembers His Comeback Journey To The Indian Team 

Updated - 30 May 2021, 11:55 AM

Kevin Pietersen, Ravindra Jadeja
Ravindra Jadeja [Image-PTI]

India all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja has now become an indispensable part of the side across formats. However, till three years ago he was a fringe player.

Both spinners Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin were discarded from the white-ball team after the 2017 Champions Trophy final loss. Ravindra Jadeja remained a second-choice to Ashwin in Test cricket in overseas conditions – he was benched for the entire 2018 Test tour of South Africa, and for the first 4 games against England as well.

A drop in form and fitness of Ashwin on the England tour meant the left-hander got his chance in the fifth Tests. He grabbed the opportunity nicely, scoring 86* in the first innings and picked a total of 7 wickets.

Ravindra Jadeja
Ravindra Jadeja. Image Credits: Getty

The southpaw was recalled to the ODI side as well during the Asia Cup when Hardik Pandya got injured. He made the most of the opportunity and booked his place in the 2019 World Cup squad, where he flourished admirably and became a regular member of the side since.

He terms that particular England Test as one which “changed everything for me”,  and gave him immense confidence going forward.

“That Test changed everything for me, poora (complete) game — my performance, my confidence, everything. When you score in English conditions against the best bowling attack, it greatly impacts your confidence. It makes you feel your technique is good enough to score anywhere in the world,” Ravindra Jadeja told The Indian Express.

“Later, Hardik Pandya got injured and I made my ODI comeback. From then on, my game has been going well, touchwood.”

Those one-and-a-half years were filled with sleepless nights: Ravindra Jadeja

The 32-year old recalls the phase when he was out of the limited-overs set-up and remained out of the Test side as well in overseas games. He reveals he couldn’t sleep well and used to be awake till early morning.

Ravindra Jadeja
Ravindra Jadeja (Image Credit: IANS)

“Honestly, those one-and-a-half years were filled with sleepless nights. Through that phase, I remember I would be up till 4-5 am. I would be thinking about what to do, how am I going to bounce back? I couldn’t sleep. I would be lying down but jaaga hi rehta tha (would remain awake).

“I was in the Test squad but not playing as we played a lot overseas. I wasn’t playing ODIs. I wasn’t playing domestic too as I would be travelling with the Indian team though not playing. I wasn’t getting any opportunity to prove myself. I would keep thinking about how I am going to come back,” Jadeja remembered.

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Indian National Cricket Team Ravichandran Ashwin Ravindra Jadeja