Captaincy can be a double-edged sword. Some like M. S. Dhoni revel with the additional responsibility.
Others such as Ravindra Jadeja appear to be playing under pressure, with their natural free-flowing game deserting them.
It is too early to judge Jadeja’s captaincy. He could grow in his new role with time. But then, he needs to shake away the self doubts and lead the side with belief and authority. And his own performances have to show the way.
Since becoming Chennai Super Kings’ captain, the left-handed Jadeja has not been the destructive player he once was. His explosive batting and daredevilry are missing. Jadeja’s form has been middling at best with 112 runs in eight innings at SR 121.73.
The southpaw has not been the marauder of the past, with the ability to close out games with big hits.
With the ball, Jadeja was adept at bowling his four overs with immaculate control, containing and striking. Now he is struggling to bowl his quota.
In eight matches, he has just five wickets at an economy rate of 8.19. He has been bowling without rhythm and confidence.
And some of his captaincy moves have been bizarre. Jadeja, rather inexplicably, failed to give left-arm spinner Mitchell Santner, who impressed by conceding just eight runs two overs, his four overs against Punjab Kings.
In a game of fine margins, such decisions can be the difference between a victory and a defeat.
Jadeja needs to rediscover his attacking instincts.