India vs Sri Lanka: Manish Pandey says players need time to adjust to new roles
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India vs Sri Lanka: Manish Pandey says players need time to adjust to new roles

Manish Pandey has said players will take time to get used to new positions after Indian cricket team skipper Virat Kohli announced experiments would be the norm for the ODI team heading into the 2019 World Cup.

india vs sri lanka 2017 Updated: Sep 01, 2017 19:34 IST
N. Ananthanarayanan
N. Ananthanarayanan
Hindustan Times, Colombo
India vs Sri Lanka,Virat Kohli,2019 World Cup
Manish Pandey has said India’s cricket team need time to adjust to new roles after Virat Kohli’s side thrashed Sri Lanka by 168 runs to go 4-0 up in the five-match ODI series.(AP)

India batsman Manish Pandey believes players will take time to get used to new positions and roles after skipper Virat Kohli declared experiments would be the norm for the ODI squad heading into the 2019 World Cup.

Pandey ended a 10-month wait to play again for India with a fluent, unbeaten 50 batting at No 6, sharing a 101-run partnership with MS Dhoni, who finished 49 not out.

The India A skipper, who missed the ICC Champions Trophy in June due to injury, got to play only after the visitors had wrapped up the series against Sri Lanka 3-0.

Pandey, 27, had earlier in the series spoken how tough it was for him to get used to the slot after batting at No 4 earlier for India as well as for Karnataka. On Thursday, he admitted his Karnataka teammate KL Rahul, a big hit as an opener, was finding it tough to get used to his new role as an ODI middle-order batsman.

“Rahul is used to batting in the top order and the game is a little different there. It is on him to come out of this situation again, he has to understand maybe how the middle overs go because he always opens the batting and suddenly you are batting after 30 overs.

“You need some time. Maybe as many more matches guys play, he will get used to it. Even I was feeling difficult batting at No 6; batting used to come after 40 overs and I was used to batting at No 4 when batting comes after 25 overs.

“So it always takes time. And the faster you learn the better batsman you become. I think that’s what I have done.”

The prolific scorer for Karnataka and India, who hit an ODI century in his debut series against Australia in early 2016, is clear what he needs to do.

“I have to be ready for whatever spot I get. So, if I get a chance then I need to get some runs and cement that spot. And then if you keep performing and you keep playing better, maybe you come one up in the order. So that will be my goal -- to fix a spot or two for myself and stay there and win games for India.”

His concerns though were eased off the pitch and on it. “I had a chat with Ravi bhai (coach Shastri) yesterday and even today before the start of the game about how I should take some time before I start playing my natural game,” Pandey said.

Of course, playing with Dhoni made things easier after India had lost three quick wickets. “I have played a few games with him already now. I know how he plays. He likes to rotate the strike. I like to bat with somebody who loves to do that. Occasionally we get some boundaries and that’s how we keep the scoreboard ticking. With Mahi bhai, you are always on your toes and he keeps giving you advice.”

First Published: Sep 01, 2017 09:24 IST