Shikhar Dhawan-Ajinkya Rahane, India's New ODI Opening Pair?

Updated: 03 September 2014 17:45 IST

Shikhar Dhawan and Ajinkya Rahane put on a 183-run opening stand in India's nine-wicket win in the fourth ODI against England on Tuesday.

Shikhar Dhawan-Ajinkya Rahane, India's New ODI Opening Pair?
Rahane and Dhawan were involved in a first-wicket stand of 183 runs. © AP

In the absence of regular opener Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and Ajinkya Rahane put on a fine effort at the top of the order on Tuesday. In a modest chase of 207 against England in the fourth ODI, Dhawan and Rahane came together in style and sent the English bowlers on a leather hunt. (Highlights)

Their partnership of 183 runs was India's highest opening stand in the current tour of England (across Tests and ODIs) and the fourth highest by Indian openers outside the sub-continent. (MS Dhoni, India's most successful ODI skipper)

This partnership came as a welcome change after MS Dhoni & Co. had struggled to get a good start throughout the Test series, which they lost 3-1 to England.  (Alastair Cook vows to carry on as England skipper)

While Rahane has often been used as a floater in India's ODI setup, his maiden ton on at the top of the order on Tuesday seems to have made a lasting impression on skipper MS Dhoni.

"I personally feel it (opening) is a good slot for him (Rahane) and that it suits him. It means Rohit can come in the middle for us," Dhoni said in the post-match press conference.

While opening the batting, Rahane has a scored a hundred and a fifty in six innings at a sparkling average of 50. His confident approach also helped his opening partner Dhawan to take time out and deal with his dwindling form. Dhawan finished with an unbeaten knock of 97 from 81 deliveries, his first fifty vs England and his eighth in ODIs.

More numbers from the fourth ODI at Edgbaston

# Ajinkya Rahane (106 off 100 balls) posted his first century in ODIs, surpassing the 91 off 104 balls vs England at Mohali on October 20, 2011.

# Rahane received his third Man of the Match award in ODIs - his second against England.

# India have won eight ODIs in England in succession between June 6, 2013 and September 2, 2014 - their best tally in any country away from home in ODIs.

# A team winning the Test series has lost the ODI series in seven successive English summers.

# The Birmingham victory is India's 50th against England in ODIs (lost 35, tied two and no-result 3 out of 90 played) - success rate 58.62 per cent.

# India have won three ODIs out of four played vs England at Birmingham - winning rate 75.00 per cent - their best success percentage at this venue is their best in ODIs in England (minimum two games).

# With three wins in a row in the present rubber, India have taken an unbeatable lead of 3-0, posting their first series victory against England in England after 24 years.

# India's brilliant victory with 117 balls remaining is their largest in terms of balls to spare against England in England in ODIs.

# Mahendra Singh Dhoni, with the aforesaid victory, has set an Indian record for most wins (91) in ODIs, eclipsing Mohammad Azharuddin's tally of 90 wins.

# India have won three successive bilateral series against England in ODIs - by 5-0 in 2011-12 in India; by 3-2 in 2012-13 in India and by 3-0 in 2014 in the present series. India had won both their matches in the Texaco Trophy against England - by six wickets at Headingley and by five wickets at Nottingham.

# With their nine-wicket triumph, India have equalled their largest victory in terms of wickets against England in ODIs. They had won by a similar margin at The Oval on May 24, 1986. These two defeats are England's only ones by nine wickets to any country in ODIs in England.

# Mohammed Shami (3/28) recorded his best bowling figures vs England in ODIs, bettering the two for 32 at Cardiff on August 27, 2014.

# Shami, with 26 wickets at 24.84 in twelve matches, is the top wicket-taker for India in ODIs in 2014.

# Bhuvneshwar Kumar's excellent figures of two for 14 are his best in eight matches in ODIs in England, bettering the two for 19 vs Pakistan at Birmingham on June 15, 2013.

# Moeen Ali's splendid 67 off 50 balls is his career-best score in ODIs, his second half-century. He had scored 55 vs West Indies at North Sound on March 5, 2014. Ali's fantastic strike rate of 134.00 is the highest by England's number seven player against India in ODIs.

(With inputs from PTI)



Topics : India in England, 2014 Shikhar Dhawan Ajinkya Rahane India Cricket
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