It needed something absolutely spectacular for India to get past a colossal target of 351 after being reduced to 63-4 at one stage. Skipper Virat Kohli led from the front with another bludgeoning knock as he registered the 27th ODI century of his career. But India’s hero for the day was none other than the local boy Kedar Jadhav, who scored a rampaging century on his home ground.
Once the centurions were dismissed, things came down to Hardik Pandya, who played a calm and mature innings to ensure that India got past the winning line. Pandya’s knock of 40 off just 37 deliveries was played at a critical time as the runs came while batting along with the lower middle-order. Earlier in the day, Pandya was also the pick of the bowlers as he grabbed a couple of wickets in the middle.
The Baroda lad was delighted with his effort and opened up in a small interview post the game.
“I am quite pleased that I contributed with the ball and with the bat,” Pandya said after the game. “It was an amazing chase. Hats off to the way Kedar and Virat batted. It gave me the confidence I could finish the game off.”
Pandya added that he would learn a lot from this experience and further improve in the future.
“It was tense out there but I was watching and learning from Virat and Kedar. Yes there were close calls with the running but that will come with age and experience. I will definitely learn from those mistakes,” said Pandya.
England skipper Eoin Morgan lauded Kohli and Jadhav for their superlative knocks in the post match presentation.
“We came to a ground that was pretty small and conditions were tough on the bowlers. You post 350 and think you’re in the game,” said Morgan. “Credit to Jadhav and Kohli. Lot of grass on the wicket. It hasn’t turned much. 350 is clearly not a winning score here. We have chased 350s, so we now know what it feels like to be at this end of the stick.”