Hardik Pandya ready to bat at any position for Team India
Having made a bright start to his ODI career for Team India, all-rounder Hardik Pandya is ready to assume the responsibility of the finisher in the side but also expressed his willingness to bat at any position as the team desires.
The 23-year-old from Gujarat picked up three wickets on his ODI debut before impressing with the bat in the 2nd ODI, almost clinching a sensational victory for the side, scoring 36 runs from 32 balls while sharing a 49-run partnership for the ninth wicket along with fellow pace bowler Umesh Yadav. However, an ill-fated cross batted shot saw him gift his wicket to the opposition while also inviting some words of advice from skipper MS Dhoni.
"It will be harsh on him, he could have [because] that option is always there," Dhoni had said at the end of that game. "You always have to target who are the bowlers you want to hit and in these kinds of situations, even the last ball counts. So it is always a good exposure for a player when he is under the pump and it always teaches you a lot. He is still learning and more often than not he will be alone along with the tail."
Pandya himself admitted that he should have perhaps not attempted that shot in the Delhi ODI but is confident that with experience, he will be able to improve his judgment as a batsman, especially when it comes to chasing big totals.
Pandya wants to learn from his mistakes
"I've actually played that shot before that as well but it was just not my day. I will learn from mistakes but I will try not to repeat that shot and experience will certainly play a role," he said. "I'm pretty ready for anything, whatever number of overs I get."
The third ODI saw India’s two premier batsman Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni put on a batting masterclass helping India chase down the target of 286 with seven wickets in hand and ten balls to spare. While Dhoni scored 80 after promoting himself to the No 4 spot, Kohli was unstoppable remaining unbeaten on 154 as the hosts took a 2-1 lead in the five-match ODI series heading into the fourth ODI at Ranchi on Wednesday.
Great learning experience
Though disappointed at missing an opportunity to impress further with the bat, Pandya revealed that the 151-run stand put on by Dhoni and Kohli in the Mohali ODI was a joy to watch as well as a great learning experience.
"As batsman whatever number I bat on, we should play according to the situation. And that's a job for everyone. [If Dhoni bats at No. 4], it gives confidence for someone who bats lower in the order. So it's pretty good. It shows a positive intent.”
“I'm enjoying watching his batting. There's a lot to learn when Dhoni and Virat Kohli bat. Their batting, the running between the wickets, it's of next level and it's inspiring," Pandya added.