Ravindra Jadeja has become one of India's most-important all-rounders in the last decade. 'Sir Jadeja', as he is dearly referred to by his fans, has rescued his IPL franchise Chennai Super Kings in some important situations with his bat or with his ball. As Jadeja celebrates his 31st birthday today, let us have a look at his top 3 IPL performances for CSK.
Batting first, CSK scored 148 on the back of Brendon McCullum's half-century. MS Dhoni and Jadeja gave the innings a much needed late flourish. Jadeja scored a quickfire 17 off 10 deliveries with one four and one six. Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) had a moderate target to chase. But CSK spinners wreaked havoc at Chepauk and they bundled out the visitors for 114. They won the match comprehensively by 34 runs. Jadeja was the chief predator as he rattled through KKR's batting line-up. He got rid of top-scorer Robin Uthappa followed by Manish Pandey, Shakib Al Hasan and Suryakumar Yadav. He was rightly adjudged 'Man of the Match' for his all-round performance.
Chennai managed to score 140 inside their 20 overs. Jadeja ended the innings at 33 not out. They had a daunting task ahead of them if they wanted to defend their total. Rajasthan Royals had the likes of Steve Smith, Shane Watson, Ajinkya Rahane and Sanju Samson. But Jadeja had some other plans as he ran through the Royals' middle order by grabbing the wickets Samson, Watson, Smith and Tim Southee. He ended up with the figures of 4/33.
This had to be one of the most dramatic games ever in the history of the IPL. Chasing 166, CSK lost both the openers quickly but the middle order brought back the innings on track. But then, wickets fell in quick succession and CSK were left with too many to chase. With 29 required off the last two overs, Ravi Rampaul sealed the deal with the wickets of Dhoni - for 33 off 23 - and Bravo - for 8 off 3 - in the 19th over. Kohli handed over the ball to RP Singh, who conceded 16 in the last over. Jadeja scored 38 from 20 deliveries to win it for CSK.