Shikhar Dhawan rose to the occasion during the first ODI between India and England which was played at the MCA Stadium in Pune and helped the Men in Blue win the match with an emphatic 98-run knock. The southpaw looked in his elements as he paced his innings well and partnered for 64 and 105 runs with Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli respectively.
Shikhar had played just one T20I in the five-match series previously against England. He played in the first match and was dropped after scoring a single-digit score, while KL Rahul was given a long run despite scoring just 15 runs in 4 matches.
However, Indian team management showed tremendous faith in the Delhi left-hander as captain Virat Kohli backed the 35-year-old and confirmed that he will open with Rohit Sharma in the ODI series.
In International Cricket, Pressure Is Always There And I Know How To Handle Pressure: Shikhar Dhawan
Shikhar Dhawan had played a brilliant platform-building inning in the first ODI laying down the launchpad for Krunal Pandya and KL Rahul to blast the England bowlers in the last 10 overs, scoring over 112* runs for the sixth wicket to take India to 317.
“In international cricket, pressure is always there and the thing is I am an experienced player, I know how to handle pressure and secondly, as I said, I am experienced player, so I know what shots to play on what certain wickets and we read the wicket nicely and communicate very nicely in the batting unit and that’s what we did and that worked for us,” the southpaw said at the virtual post-match press conference.
“I was focusing on my process, fitness, skill-work, gym-work and I always stay in a positive mental space. I always try and look at the positives from every situation. That’s what I was doing. I was confident with my batting. I knew that if I get an opportunity, I’ll take it,” Shikhar Dhawan said.
Dhawan had also stated that initially the England fast bowlers generated swing and movement from the pitch and that’s why he and Rohit Sharma had to be cautious in the first powerplay. Dhawan stated that India did not want to lose early wickets as the surface was helping the England pacers.