Ravindra Jadeja, who has been named in the Indian squad for the series against Australia, will make a return to competitive cricket by playing Saurashtra’s last Ranji Trophy game against Tamil Nadu in Chennai, starting January 24. ESPN Cricinfo reported that Jadeja, who is recovering from a knee injury at the National Cricket Academy in Bangalore started to bowl and bat earlier this week but needs to take a fitness test in order to return to the cricket field.
In September 2022, Jadeja had to leave the Indian camp after their group-stage games in the Asia Cup due to a long-standing knee injury which forced him to undergo surgery for the issue. Jadeja hadn’t played any first-class matches since the Edgbaston Test in July and even though he picks himself in the Indian squad, being the sole left-handed batter in the absence of Rishabh Pant, his fitness needs to be fully ascertained before taking a risk.
In the previous Border-Gavaskar Trophy in India, Jadeja was the biggest contributor to the Indian side and finished with 25 wickets and 127 runs to win the Player of the Series award. In the last five years, Jadeja is averaging over 50 with the bat to emerge as the biggest match-winner for the Indian side.
The Border-Gavaskar Trophy starts on February 9 in Nagpur and the match between Saurashtra and Tamil Nadu provides the team management with a good opportunity to accustom himself with the red-ball cricket.