4 Reasons Why Ravindra Jadeja Should Bat Higher Up The Order In Tests

Team India is currently in need of a new batting strategy to improve the yield from the middle-order. Especially the trio of Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane have been far from effective in recent games. Hence, talks are going around if in-form batsman Ravindra Jadeja can bat a little higher up than his usual No.7/No.6 position. In this article, we discuss four reasons why Ravindra Jadeja should bat higher up the order in Tests.

1) Highly improved numbers in recent years

Since 2016, Ravindra Jadeja has been striking with an average of more than 37.50. In fact, in this period, 37.50 is his lowest yearly average, with the top end having reached 62.86 in 2019. It was also in 2019 that he scored 440 runs, the all-rounder’s highest yearly record. This is terrific considering Jaddu bats mostly at No.7 and below.

Also, since 2018, Jadeja’s average in away Tests is higher than that of Virat, Pujara and Rahane. Of course, the runs scored may be less, but the Saurashtra lad comes to bat only in such situations. He also has three Ranji triple-centuries and hence, technical proficiency is not a doubt. With such a recent record, it is a wise option to have the player bat a little higher up.


2) Ensures left-right combination throughout for Team India

Until recently, India’s middle-order was brim with right-handers. In fact, even the openers in recent years have been right-handers after Shikhar Dhawan was dropped. Only after Rishabh Pant entered the scene, there has been some variety in the lower half of the middle-order.

Not only in limited-overs cricket, but the right-left combination is also a useful tactic in Tests. If Ravindra Jadeja gets a chance higher up the order and with Pant also in the line-up, Team India can ensure that this tactic is prevalent throughout the batting innings. This will set the opposition camp into thinking of strategies to combat a diverse batting order. Hence, Ravindra Jadeja should bat higher up the order in Tests.

3) Better than Pujara and Rahane in playing attacking stats

Including his best score of 100* that included five sixes, Ravindra Jadeja never shies away from taking on the bowler. Sometimes, a counterattack is the best possible tactic to shift the pressure back on the bowlers. One of the best limited-overs all-rounders that India has seen, Jaddu is adept at getting the big hits consistently.


Hence, based on this aspect, Jadeja is more equipped, both skill-wise and mindset-wise, to add impetus to the scoring by the team. Usually, due to India’s fragile tail, Jaddu’s knocks reach an abrupt end. Hence, to make full use of him as a batsman, Ravindra Jadeja should bat higher up the order in Tests.

4) Ravindra Jadeja is not great playing with the tail

Any batsman playing at No.6 and No.7 should have the skill to play with the tail. While the likes of VVS Laxman are the best examples of such a skill, Ravindra Jadeja somehow struggles with it. In the recent WTC final, with India struggling at 205-7, Jaddu would have been expected to hang around a bit longer at the crease. But he miscalculated the singles and the Kiwis ran through the tail.

Strike-rotation is a problem and hence, the singles at the end of the over usually don’t happen. The bowlers are exposed and with the fragile tail of Team India, in a matter of few moments, the Indian innings gets over. To avoid this, someone like Rahane could come down and Jadeja can make a move up.


Nesara V Jagannatha

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