Manish Pandey wary of losing his place in Indian side

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Manish Pandey wary of losing his place in Indian side

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SportsCafe Desk

09/26/2017

Manish Pandey has admitted that he feels the pressure as his place in the Indian team is not confirmed owing to the quality of players on the fringe. The 28-year-old also refuted Harbhajan Singh's claim that the current Australian side is a shadow of the Aussie teams of yesteryear.

Pandey scored a couple of half centuries on his comeback to the Indian team in the limited overs series against Sri Lanka earlier this month. However, in the first two ODIs against Australia, Pandey struggled to find his groove and could only manage two single-digit scores in the first two ODIs. However, in the third ODI, with Australia in the ascendency, Pandey, along with Hardik Pandya, settled Indian the innings, guiding their team to victory in Indore.

The 28-year-old, however, was quick to acknowledge that there was immense pressure on the middle over batsmen to perform in order to retain their places. With Shikhar Dhawan being the first choice opener, Pandey has to compete with the likes of Ajinkya Rahane, Kedar Jadhav, MS Dhoni, and K L Rahul for three places in the Indian middle order. 

"Definitely, there is pressure in the middle order. I would like to play more games and win matches for India. I am doing the hard work to try and find a place for me in the playing eleven," Pandey said ahead of the Bengaluru ODI, reported PTI.

"It is completely different when you are playing number three, four or six. It is all about the mindset. It is about aggressiveness. I would like to spend more time on the wicket to make myself feel at ease at the crease." 

Australia have received a lot of flak over the last two weeks for their batting performance in the three matches so far. Recently, Harbhajan Singh took a pot-shot at the Australians stating that the current side was a shadow of the great Australian teams of the past and went as far as to ask Micheal Clarke to make a return to save his compatriots from humiliation. Pandey, however, refused to be too critical of the visitors stating that it was just their middle order that was struggling.

"I think it is his own views about cricket. I think Australia is a fairly good side which boasts of quality batsmen. It is this series where they have lost matches on the trot. Nevertheless, they are a team to beat," Pandey added.

"I think they are doing really well, but some of the things are not clicking for them. Their top order is getting runs, but not the middle order," he said.

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