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1st Test: Try to keep myself relaxed in any pressure scenario, says Ravindra Jadeja (Ld)

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Mohali, March 5 (IANS) India all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja on Saturday said that his endeavour while batting at the crease is to keep himself relaxed during pressure scenarios. On day two of the first Test against Sri Lanka at the IS Bindra PCA Stadium, Jadeja mixed solid defence with lovely shots and batted with great ease to make a career-best, unbeaten 175 as India declared at 574/8 in 129.2 overs. In response, Sri Lanka ended the day at 108/4 in 43 overs.

“When you are in international cricket, you need to change your mindset. That is what I am doing. I am taking time at the crease and try to keep myself relaxed in any pressure scenario. Keeping myself calm is a plus point for me so that my ability becomes more better and the natural shots in my batting come out more,” said Jadeja in the post-day virtual press conference.

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Jadeja stated that he was happy with his batting performance propelling India to a mammoth first innings total. “I look to improve my game every single time whenever I play for India. Whenever I get an opportunity to score runs, I definitely look to implement that in performances when the opportunity comes. All in all, I am very much happy.”

Jadeja further revealed that the plan while batting was to get runs quickly and then push Sri Lanka into batting during the second session. After India’s declaration, an early tea was taken and India got a full session for making inroads into Sri Lanka’s batting order.

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“When the messages were coming from inside, I was also telling them when I was batting, the ball had started to keep low and also began to turn. This was the message I sent outside that something is happening from the wicket and can send them (Sri Lanka batters) into batting as they were fielding for 1.5 days and must be tired.”

“It wouldn’t be easy for them to come out and play big shots while staying at the crease for long, which wasn’t easy. The plan was to get runs as quickly as possible and declare quickly so that their tired batters won’t get it easy to bat on.”

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Asked about his learnings with the bat during his knock of 175, Jadeja pointed towards judicious shot selection. “For Saurashtra, I used to bat at number four and had the chance to play a big innings as I had three-four batters behind me. I used to have enough time to play and build my innings.”

“But here, I am batting at seven and had good partnerships with Rishabh, Ashwin and Shami. It felt good and as a batsman, I take time and do my shot selection judiciously. After calculating what is happening from the wicket, I decide my shot selection. This is what helps me in my batting and I try to keep myself as relaxed as possible.”

Jadeja signed off by saying that his plan to dismiss Sri Lanka skipper Dimuth Karunaratne lbw was to bowl a stump-to-stump line due to the turn and low bounce.

“When I was batting, the odd ball was keeping low or was turning. The natural variation was happening from the wicket. The plan was then to bowl towards the stumps as if I kept bowling there, it could turn or straighten as well.”

“That actually happened when my second ball was normal. The first ball turned well and was close. For the second ball, I was thinking to keep it to the third or fourth stump. The ball turned and kept low a bit; there was also a chance of hitting the stumps. So, that was the plan.”



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