IND v BAN, 3rd ODI: Was looking to watch the ball properly, go with the flow, says Ishan Kishan on his record 210

In October, Ishan Kishan was very sad about missing his maiden hundred in international cricket by seven runs in the second ODI against South Africa at Ranchi in an attacking 93 off 84 balls. Cut to the present, and Kishan was a very elated man because he not only got a century but converted it into a double ton in the third ODI against Bangladesh at Chattogram.

Kishan slammed the fastest double-century in the history of men’s ODI cricket, off just 126 balls, shattering the previous record of the fastest 200 in men’s ODIs, which was held by Chris Gayle, made his double-century in 138 balls against Zimbabwe in the 2015 ODI World Cup, setting the base for India’s 227-run win to sign off from the series on a high.

“It was a perfect wicket and situation to bat on. I was just looking to watch the ball properly, and go with the flow. At this level, whenever you get the chance, you need to make the most out of it. I was just picking the ball and the bowlers, and things were going my way!” he said in the post-match presentation ceremony.

It was a knock during which Kishan never let go of his attacking instincts as he grabbed the opportunity of opening the batting in the absence of regular skipper Rohit Sharma. At the sight of the slightest width from bowlers, he was quick to crash the ball through the off-side.

When the bowlers bowled short balls on the slowish pitch, he was fast in pulling the ball over leg-side, with all ten of his sixes coming in the arc from wide long-on to long leg. Even when he wasn’t timing the ball well, he still managed to attack and clear the fielders to get boundaries, leaving Bangladesh clueless.

In his 210 off 131 balls against Bangladesh, Kishan had a boundary percentage of 74.29, playing just 49 dot balls and a strike-rate of 160.31. He was equally severe on pacers and spinners. He was the dominant partner in a 290-run stand with Virat Kohli and completely overshadowed his 72nd international hundred with an innings to remember for ages.

“After looking at the wicket, I knew it was going to play well. Was trying to smash the loose balls. There is so much conversation going on in the team about fitness. I think when you have so many senior players in the team. We have been doing conversations. Our trainer and physio are taking care of everyone,” added Kishan.

Kishan, 24, also became the fourth Indian to hit a double hundred in ODIs after Rohit Sharma, Virender Sehwag and Sachin Tendulkar as well as the seventh men’s batter overall to achieve the feat, alongside Gayle, Martin Guptill and Fakhar Zaman. He’s also the youngest to hit a double-hundred in men’s ODI cricket.

“The wicket was too good to bat on. My intent was very clear — if the ball is there, I’ll go for it. I’m blessed to hear my name amid such legends. Still feel when I got out — 15 overs were left. Could’ve scored 300 also. The wicket was too good to bat on. My intent was very clear: if the ball is there, I’ll go for it,” he had said at the end of India’s innings.

Kishan also added 290 runs for the second wicket with Virat Kohli, who made his 44th ODI hundred, and his first in the format since August 2019, also his 72nd international hundred through a 91-ball 113. The mammoth stand between Kishan and Kohli is India’s third-highest partnership in men’s ODIs, and the seventh-highest ever in the format.

“Batting with Virat bhai, he has a such good sense of the game. He was calming me down when I was in my 90s. I wanted to bring it up with a six, but he said to get it in singles as it’s your first.”

Kishan signed off by revealing that he even spoke to middle-order batter Suryakumar Yadav for improving his game. “Had a chat with Surya bhai — he said when you bat before the game, you see the ball well. I didn’t take too much pressure on myself. Just wanted to make use of the opportunity.”

Time will tell if the Indian team will give Kishan a long run in ODIs and T20Is and encourage him to play the way he does. For now, he can revel in the adulation and tons of congratulatory messages after writing his name in record books at Chattogram.

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