After thumping Australia by eight wickets in the Boxing Day Test, India look forward to continuing their victory run when they take the field in Sydney on January 7. The Sydney Cricket Ground is known for favouring spin bowlers and with decent spin disposal up their ranks, Ajinkya Rahane & Co have a solid chance to exploit those conditions against a wobbling Aussie batting line-up.
As witnessed in Melbourne, the Indian spin duo of Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja is currently proving effective. Their bowling partnership, along with the pace attack, kept the Australian batsmen at bay. Provided this combination is fielded in the third Test, India have a strong chance of taking a 2-1 lead in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
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Speaking of the same, former Indian spinner Pragyan Ojha has opined that the partnership between Ashwin and Jadeja has been superb and India must play them both in the next match.
“Sydney has a track record of helping the spinners. I’m very sure that we shouldn’t change the combination of Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja,” Ojha told Sports Today.
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“The way Jadeja batted [in Melbourne] and with Ashwin, we know he can bat. These guys have also been phenomenal with the bowling. If one guy bowls tight, the other one picks up the wicket and vice-versa. So, I think, this partnership is brilliant and if they continue it in overseas, that will be superb,” he added.
The former cricketer also cited the example of former Indian spinners Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh who had hunted in pairs and led India to victory on many occasions. Ojha believes that Ashwin and Jadeja combined can take down any opposition, no matter what the conditions are.
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“We have seen Anil Bhai [Anil Kumble] and Bhajju Paa [Harbhajan Singh] doing that for us in the past. Now, these two guys in overseas… I think, there is nothing more to ask for,” Ojha said further.
Meanwhile, left-arm pacer T Natarajan has been included in the Indian Test squad for the remainder of the series. He has replaced Umesh Yadav who has been ruled out after suffering a calf injury during the second innings of the Boxing Day Test match.