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If need be, India can field four to five ODI sides’ – Keshav Maharaj speaks of India’s depth in bench strength

Maharaj had a great outing in the first ODI as he picked up 1-23 in his eight overs.
Keshav Maharaj
Keshav Maharaj – Source (Twitter)

India lost the first ODI to South Africa by just nine runs and this allowed the Proteas to take a vital 1-0 lead over India in the three-match series. One of the heroes in that game for South Africa was Keshav Maharaj, who bowled beautifully and conceded only 23 runs in his spell of eight overs in a match that was reduced to 40 overs due to rain.

Speaking about the first game in Ranchi, Maharaj said that he would not consider the Indian ODI side, led by Shikhar Dhawan, as a second-string one. According to him, India is capable of fielding four to five international sides if need be.

The Indian side has fringe players who are playing the ODI series against South Africa. South Africa has started off the series on the right note. They lost the T20I series 1-2 to India.

“I would not call it a second-string Indian side. India has so much talent that they can field four-five proper international sides,” Maharaj said on the eve of the second and penultimate ODI here.

I don’t think he really had a poor outing: Maharaj on Tabarez Shamsi

Tabarez Shamsi had a day to forget as he conceded 1-89 in his eight-over spell. But Maharaj had full faith in Shamsi, and he said that the wrist spinner would bounce back strongly and that he would not read too much in that one performance.

“I don’t think he really had a poor outing. Figures don’t exactly tell you the true reflection of the way someone bowled. The Indian batters had to take on someone and unfortunately, it was him on the day. I thought he held his nerve really well at the back end,” Maharaj said.

Ahead of the second game, Maharaj said that he would love to have a chat with MS Dhoni about cricket if he had a chance. “I never got the opportunity to play with him. But I would love to have a chat with him. He’s been a world-class performer, more especially from the leadership point of view. Just his calmness on the field. There’s a lot of things that people can learn from him,” he said

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