Jadhav helps Virat to begin 'Kohli era' in ODIs with a bang
Pune [India], Jan. 15 (ANI): Middle-order batsman Kedar Jhadav and newly appointed skipper Virat Kohli on Sunday scored blistering centuries under immense pressure to guide India to a three-wicket win in a nerve-breaking first ODI against England and take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series here at the Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA) Stadium.
It was Hardik Pandya's gigantic six that put the icing on the cake as India registered the historic feat under newly appointed skipper Kohli, that too in his captaincy debut.
Jhadav (120 off 76 balls), who came to bat at No. 7 after India had lost four wickets at 63, batted extremely well with Kohli (122) and the duo stitched together a record 200-run partnership to ensure the host chase down the mammoth target of 351.
The 31-year-old batsman, who notched up his second ODI century, was extremely attacking as he smashed the England bowlers to all parts of the ground and hit 12 boundaries and four sixes. He scored the fifth fastest century and became the fourth Indian batsman to do so, joining the likes of Kohli, Virender Sehwag and Yuvraj Singh.
Kohli, on the other hand, didn't show any sign of added pressure of captaincy, and was equally fluent and artistic with the bat as he scored his 27th ODI century. Defending the short boundaries was too difficult a task for England, with only Jake Ball – who took 3 for 67 – and Chris Woakes going at fewer than seven runs an over.
Earlier in the day, the Eoin Morgan-led side had made a total of 350, by scoring 105 runs coming between the 42nd and the 50th over.
All-rounder Ben Stokes (62 off 40 deliveries), along with Jason Roy (73) and Joe Root (78) contributed well to the English innings and did majority of the hitting for the visitors.
Chasing down the target, India made a shaky start by losing openers KL Rahul (8), Shikhar Dhawan (1), recalled batsman Yuvraj (15) and MS Dhoni (6) at the team's score of 63 only inside the first 15 overs.
Jadhav was fairly adjudged Man of the Match for his match-winning knock.
It was the fourth highest successful run chase in ODI history. The two teams will next meet on January 19 at Barabati Stadium in Cuttack. (ANI)