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KL Rahul after scoring 75: 'Wanted to be positive, put loose balls away'
- India beat Australia by 5 wickets in 1st ODI on Friday
- Rahul scored his career’s 13th ODI half-century
- He shared a 108-run stand with Jadeja
KL Rahul on Friday said he wanted to "be positive and put loose balls away" as he helped India beat Australia in the first One-Day International (ODI).
Rahul remained unbeaten on 75 during India's five-wicket victory in the opening ODI at Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai as the hosts went 1-0 up in the three-match series.
In reply to Australia's 188, India lost three batters inside five overs, with Ishan Kishan, Virat Kohli, and Suryakumar Yadav all getting out for a single digit. While Suryakumar was dismissed for a golden duck, Shubman Gill scored 20 off 31 balls.
Eventually, a fine stand between Ravindra Jadeja and Rahul brought India's chase back into the track. Before their sixth-wicket partnership, Hardik Pandya, India's stand-in captain, hit a six and three fours in his knock of 25 off 31 balls.
Speaking in the post-match presentation on Friday, Rahul said he tried to play normal cricketing shots, especially since India lost three early wickets and Australia pacer Mitchell Starc had begun to look threatening.
"Saw three wickets fall down early, Starc was swinging the ball well and when he brings the ball back in, he is a dangerous bowler. Just tried to play normal cricketing shots. Got a few boundaries away and that settled my nerves. I batted with Shubman, Hardik, and Jadeja. The talk was that there's help on the wicket but we did not want to get into our shell and play out a certain bowler," said Rahul.
Rahul struck a six and seven fours in his knock that was his 13th ODI half-century. The Karnataka batsman also spoke about Jadeja, who earned the Player of the Match for his all-round show as he picked up 2 for 46 and scored an unbeaten 45 off 69 deliveries.
"We wanted to be positive and put the loose balls away. If we are good with out footwork, we could do well and it was fun batting with Jadeja. The minute the left-hander walked in, I got a few loose ball. That happens to the best of bowlers. The left-hander walking in and that worked for us. Jaddu batted beautifully and he runs hard between the wickets.
"He is in great form and he knows what to do in those situations. When we started off, I didn't think it will help the bowlers so much, there would be spongy bounce. Once Shami came in for his second spell, he bowled well and picked up wickets. The bowlers did well in the middle overs. When there's bounce, I like keeping wickets. It is a bit of a challenge when it is slow and low, it is challenging physically. The ball was moving around and I enjoy playing here at the Wankhede," added Rahul.
Jadeja: Wanted to adapt to ODI cricket soon
Jadeja, who was playing ODIs after eight months, said he "was looking to adapt to the format as soon as possible."
"Luckily with the ball, I got a few wickets. When I went to bat, I was looking to build a partnership with KL. I knew that the total was small but still we had to chase it down. We've been playing Test cricket. Line and length are different to Test cricket. You have to alter your lengths and pace. I was looking to bowl in good areas and I was also getting a bit of turn. I was looking to build a partnership today of about 70-80 runs, and that's what happened. It was not easy to play big shots because the ball was swinging," Jadeja said after India's five-wicket win.