Ravindra Jadeja has come out all guns blazing in defense of his spin partner Ravichandran Ashwin stating that the responsibility for taking wickets does not lie just on the latter's shoulders. Jadeja also added that losing the toss might play an important part in deciding the winner of the match.
Ashwin, who conceded 167 runs while claiming just two wickets in the first innings of the Rajkot Test, has come under fire from many critics over the last two days.
"We have five bowlers and all five bowlers have the responsibility and not only Ashwin. As it happens sometimes chances go down, it's all part of the game. Everyone is responsible in equal measure," Jadeja said.
England finished their first innings with a score of 537 and Jadeja recorded the best figures for the Indians with 3/86 from 30 overs having bowled just 9 of those overs on the second day.
"That was captain's thinking. He must have had his own reasons looking from the team's point of view. I don't think it was his plan to deliberately bowl (Ravichandran) Ashwin and (Amit) Mishra more," the all-rounder added.
Jadeja praised Stokes' innings of 128 in the first innings, but refused to criticize Wriddhiman Saha, who dropped the Englishman when he was at just 61.
"He(Stokes) played very well and played according to merit. Initially, he was struggling against Umesh (Yadav), but after that he played calmly. Whenever a catch has been dropped, it has often happened a batsman will go on to score a century. Stokes got two chances and then a few fell in no man's land, but these things are common in cricket," the 27-year-old said.
The Gujarat lad also predicted that the toss, that India lost, could play an important part in who would take a lead in the five-match series because of how the Rajkot pitch usually turns out.
"I think the toss took away the game (from us). Everyone knows that on the first two days the Rajkot wicket suits batsmen and after that the spinners come into play. That's all I can say," Jadeja concluded.
"As the game progresses, pitch will get slower. From one end, where there are some foot marks, deliveries can spin. But the middle portion has remained the same. Yesterday and today, the fast bowlers had some help but over the next few days the wicket will become slower."