Unless a miracle occurs over the next several months, Ravindra Jadeja’s tenure with Chennai Super Kings may come to an end.
Since the end of the IPL in May, the Indian all-rounder is rumoured to have lost all contact with the CSK leadership.
Because CSK runs “like a family,” players stay in touch with the team all year long. However, Jadeja, who underwent rehabilitation at NCA before rejoining the Indian squad, has fully kept the Chennai franchise in the dark and has not participated in any CSK activities.
Midway through the IPL, the management relieved Jadeja of his captaincy because they thought it was affecting his performance. The all-rounder, who had hopes to captain his country, undoubtedly regarded it as an insult and chose to break all ties with the team as soon as he was forced to withdraw from the competition due to a rib ailment.
It is highly doubtful that Jadeja would be prepared to return given that Dhoni has already stated that he will participate in the upcoming IPL and will most likely captain the squad. The first concrete sign that Jadeja wants a “exit” will, however, be an official transfer bid from another franchise. At that time, Jadeja would have to meet with the CSK officials, and Dhonia and the senior management might make a last-ditch effort to appease him and retain him on the team.
When Jadeja joined CSK in 2012, the squad did not immediately see success with him. There have been many ups and downs, but more importantly, Dhoni and CSK have been by his side through it all. Jadeja has developed into a key member of the Indian side in all three formats after Dhoni first recognised his ability as a Test match bowler.
When it comes down to business in November, all these emotional variables may also be at play. There have been rumours that the player has been in touch with a few elite organisations, who will require an Indian captain sooner rather than later, but there hasn’t been any official correspondence along those lines. If the Saurashtra player is willing to listen, Dhoni’s man-management abilities could be essential to keeping these big boys away from Jadeja.
Insiders with CSK continue to maintain that Dhoni was relieved of his captaincy because he genuinely thought Jadeja’s status in the Indian T20 team may be questioned if he didn’t perform well in the IPL. While India’s T20 World Cup campaign will be the current focus, the Jadeja-CSK issue will keep the franchises on their toes as they work to strengthen their squads for the upcoming IPL season.