On an extremely rare occasion have we seen someone smashing 37 runs in an over, on rarer occasions still, have we seen the same person taking the ball and send the stumps of Glenn Maxwell and AB De Villiers flying in the same game.
The kind of performance Ravindra Jadeja put out in front of the world, a world so terribly engulfed by the misery caused by the virus, does not just deserve flowery petals, it deserves gilded letters and badges of honour.
Merciless with the bat
He began the show with the bat and Purple Cap holder Harshal Patel will never be able to forget the final over he bowled on the 25th of April, 2021. Beyond its impact on the scoreboard, an over like that can cause some serious psychological damage and we sincerely hope, that isn't the case for Harshal Patel who has looked so good in the tournament so far.
He was arriving into the final over after a brilliant spell. Harshal had picked up three important wickets and conceded just 13 runs. All of that went up in flames as soon as Ravindra Jadeja wielded his bat like a sword, sending the first delivery of the over into the stands. Harshal missed the yorker once again in the next delivery and was brutally punished in the same manner.
The third delivery of the over was where the proverbial back of the Purple Cap holder broke. Bowling from round the wicket, Harshal's ball had a baseball flight, and yet, the waist-high no-ball was smoked over deep mid-wicket for yet another six!
Jadeja mauled the free hit delivery, this time a slower short ball to deep midwicket's left for another six. Harshal Patel looked as flustered as an office-goer missing his alarm clock and having to wake up to a nightmare. Jadeja had now brought up a 25-ball 50 and there was more to come.
The last two deliveries of the over were punished with impunity. Jadeja tore into Harshal Patel's mind and the death bowler had no answers left. The southpaw clubbed a full toss over long-on to smash the fifth six of the over. He nearly had six sixes when the last delivery of the over missed the boundary rope by a few yards, taking a bounce before finding its home outside the field of play once again. 37 runs off six balls. This was not just utter domination, it was a daylight humiliation, an absolute mockery.
CSK were on 154 by the end of the 19th over, they now had 191 on what seemed like a tricky Wankhede wicket, as we saw in the match between KKR and RR the other night. However, Jadeja wasn't done telling his phenomenal story in this match.
Effective with the ball and in field
Royal Challengers Bangalore got off to a good start, thanks to the dazzling Devdutt Padikkal who picked things up from right where he left off in the previous match, at an unbeaten century. Padikkal wasted no time in getting himself adjusted to the nature of the track and it was fireworks right from the word go.
RCB lost plenty of momentum once Padikkal was dismissed by Sam Curran, but with Glenn Maxwell and AB De Villiers following next, they were still in the game. We've seen how these two batsmen have wreaked havoc in the tournament so far. Just as KKR, their bowlers are still reeling from the 150 odd runs added by De Villiers and Maxwell in that match and with breathtaking style.
That's when Ravindra Jadeja came into the picture, once again. Washington Sundar, batting at number three failed to middle Jaddu's delivery and dragged it high in the air only for Ruturaj Gaikwad to take a comfortable catch.
Jadeja added insult to injury by embarrassing, absolutely embarrassing their middle-order pillars in Glenn Maxwell and AB de Villiers. Those are two cricketers with plenty of international pedigree and prestige and yet when the stumps went flying behind them, Ravindra Jadeja ended up looking like a professional playing gully cricket with the kids in his neighbourhood.
He went on to add a maiden over to his moments of brilliance on the field tonight and dismissed Dan Christian with a spectacular direct hit to complete one of the greatest all-round performances in IPL history!
Watching Ravindra Jadeja today, amidst the backdrop of everything that has been going on, was a privilege and boy, did he put on a show!