Showing fantastic temperament, Manish Pandey emerged a hero: Ayaz Memon analyses India’s Sydney win

Dhoni, who chose to bowl after calling the toss right, saw his team concede 330 runs despite reducing Australia to 117 for 4, thanks to centuries from David Warner and Mitchell Marsh. India, like in Canberra, had to put up a never-before-achieved chase in Australia to get a consolation win. And they did that thanks to excellent knocks from Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and Manish Pandey and an iffy, but crucial, innings from Dhoni himself at the end.

Ayaz gives his take on India’s win and the hero of the day, Manish Pandey. 

“Young Manish Pandey held his nerve. What a tense game this was! For him to have to led the team to victory when it looked at a stage when Dhoni was struggling for his timing, you felt that the match was squandered despite the top-order’s efforts,” Ayaz told. “Look at the way he batted, especially in the last 5-7 overs. Fantastic temperament, great running between the wickets, and don’t forget he was the pick of the Indian fielders too.”

“At a big stage, Manish Pandey was India’s hero in every sense of the word,” he added. Ayaz also spoke about his form in domestic cricket and his role in Karnataka’s dominance. 

Responding to some pointed queries on Twitter about Dhoni’s innings – one person asked if this was the end of the ODI road for him, while another quipped if it was Dhoni out in the middle or Sushant Singh Rajput playing Dhoni’s role – Ayaz said the pressure is definitely on the captain but he did wonder if this win might help him win his mojo back. 

“He’s not at his best, because he is not playing enough competitive cricket after his retirement from Tests,” said Ayaz before adding that he hopes to see a much more spirited Dhoni after this win. He also spoke about Ravichandran Ashwin’s disappointing tour Down Under so far.

Ayaz was full of praise for what is actually quite an inexperienced Australian team for ending up deserved winners of the five-match series.


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