Ravindra Jadeja revealed that while batting, Hardik Pandya and he discussed the situation and decided to follow the 'MS Dhoni plan' of taking it to the end of the inning and then chancing their arms in the death overs.
Ravindra Jadeja turns to watch the ball while batting with Hardik Pandya against Australia during their one day international cricket match at Manuka Oval in Canberra, Australia. (AP Photo)
MS Dhoni Plan: Tottering at 152/5 in the 33rd over of their innings during the third ODI against Australia at Canberra, India were in troubled, but familiar, waters with their last recognised batsmen – all-rounders Hardik Pandya and Ravindra Jadeja at the crease. Any further fall of wicket would’ve exposed the tail of the Indian batting and made difficult any chance of them posting a sizable total and holding on to any semblance of pride after being outplayed in the first two One Day Internationals at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) and handing over the three-match-series 2-0 to the Aussies.
At that crucial juncture it was the Mahendra Singh Dhoni template that the Pandya-Jadeja duo relied on to amass a record 150-run unbeaten partnership guiding Team India to a fighting total of 302/5 in 50 overs. Jadeja revealed in a post-match interview how the ‘MS Dhoni plan’ of building and pacing the innings helped the duo through their stint on the crease.
Referring to Mahendra Singh Dhoni as ‘Mahi bhai’, Jadeja said that whether it was Team India or Chennai Super Kings (CSK) MSD had a set pattern for building his innings. Dhoni would walk out to bat with the intent to get himself set at the crease and build a partnership with the other batsman. While batting MSD would always tell him that if they batted till the end of the innings then they could score plenty of runs in the last four or five overs, Jadeja said in the post-match interaction with Sony Sports Network.
Ravindra Jadeja revealed that while batting, Hardik Pandya and he discussed the situation and decided to follow the ‘MS Dhoni plan’ of taking it to the end of the inning and then chancing their arms in the death overs. Also, he revealed, that the boundary was shorter on one side of the ground and they decided to target that.
Despite him hanging his Team India jersey, MS Dhoni inspired the duo to build the highest ever sixth-wicket partnership in India-Australia ODIs. Hardik Pandya remained unbeaten on 92 off 76 deliveries, while Jadeja scored an unbeaten 66 off 50 balls to take the Indian score past 300-run-mark after they had lost 5 wickets in the 33rd over and tottering at a score of 152 runs.
Thanks to the duo’s heroics and Shardul Thakur’s three-wicket haul, India managed to pull off a 13-run win on Wednesday. Team India will look to ride on the momentum in the three-match T20 series that begins Friday at Manuka Oval, Canberra. The three T20s will be played on December 4, 6 and 8, and the second and third matches will be played at the SCG.