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We take our hats off to Kedar Jadhav: Eoin Morgan

By Rashmi Nanda -
England skipper Eoin Morgan said that the Indian right-handed middle-order batsman Kedar Jadhav punctured the visitor’s plane by playing an aggressive inning as well Morgan rued his side, who had allowed the hosts to wriggle out of a tricky condition early in their run chase in the first ODI in Pune.

With the help of an aggressive innings of 76-ball 120 of Kedar along with Indian skipper Virat Kohli, who scored 122 runs in just 105 deliveries India chased down a stiff target of 351 for a three-wicket win on Sunday in Pune.

Morgan stated about the Pune-born batsman Jadhav’s whirlwind knock, “What hurts the most is we had India at 60 (63) for 4. We were right in till the middle order but went into the bowl at worst. Certainly, we did not expect Jadhav to come out and play like that, credit to his 76-ball hundred. We take our hat off to him. He was striking it from ball one and gave us no chance.”

At times, the Kedar overshadowed his famed skipper with the range of his shots and the 200-run partnership of Kohli and Jadhav in 24.3 overs after India were down in the dumps raised the hosts to 263 for 5.

Although, before finishing the job both Kedar and Kohli got out and Hardik Pandya (40 not out) and R Ashwin (15 not out) guided India to win the first ODI.

Though, he said that England had done their research on Kedar Jadhav before playing the Pune ODI. Morgan explained, “We’ve watched the footage of the international matches that he’s played in. We were not necessarily caught off guard. We did as much as we could homework-wise,” 

Morgan said that they had also a proper plan for Indian skipper but it failed. He stated on this, “There is always something we can do. All the plans went far off today and the balls went overhead, maybe those two yards on another day, and that would have been out. And they would have been five down and you are right into them. He’s a fantastic player. He (Kohli) has proven that over a long period of time,” 

As the pitch conditions in the Pune were very good for batting England should have batted better than what they did as they made 350 for 7, felt Morgan. He said, “Yes, our batting effort was good, but it still was not our best. When you score 350 you expect to play well. That summarizes the conditions here, the pitch was really good and the boundaries were pretty small. If anything, today proves that chasing 350, even at 60 for 4, you are never out of the game.”

He further stated, “Creating those chances early on was a great effort. India came back at us hard, kept up with the rate and still kept coming. The wicket allowed them to do that. You don’t know what a good score at this ground. The ground is so small. All the feedback we have had from the games we have played here, particularly IPL, is that the wicket is inconsistent. It certainly wasn’t the case today. The wicket did get better as the game went on,” 

Even after losing the first ODI, English skipper also looked at the positive aspects of his side. He stated on this, “There are some positives for us. We took four early wickets, which is tough in sub-continent. Taking early wickets is something we’ve always struggled to do in the past. David Willey has done well for us particularly at home, and from there you look at different options. From the batting point of view, we did not play brilliantly but still got ourselves 350.”