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We don't fear any total: Ben Stokes

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Pune, March 26 (IANS) England all-rounder Ben Stokes, who hammered the quickest 99 in the One-day International (ODI) history, off just 52 balls, said England’s fearless cricket helped them beat India in the second match here on Friday.

“It was a better wicket than the one in the first game. Over the years, we have set big totals, we have chased big totals. We don’t really fear too much to be honest. We don’t fear any total to be honest,” said Stokes after England’s six-wicket win at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium.

“We always go out and try to play as positively as we can. If we feel we are stuck in a situation, we always encourage our players to take the positive option. It could have been easy to rein ourselves in after the last game but from a personal and team point of view, it was important to play as we do,” added Stokes who hit 10 sixes in his knock.

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The left-handed batsman, who has been promoted to No. 3 in the batting order said that they wanted to take on the spinners and had planned to target them.

Both left-arm spinner Krunal Pandya and Kuldeep Yadav gave away 156 runs in 16 overs which was close 10 an over.

“We speak about match-ups in our change room. I took the decision that if the spinners come on, it was my match-up to take the risk and just let Jonny (Bairstow) keep doing his thing. He’s in unbelievable form at the moment, you don’t need to be talking too much to him. It’s all about picking your match-ups,” said Stokes who added 175 runs off 114 balls with man-of-the-match Bairstow for the second wicket.

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“The most pleasing thing for us (England team) is that we didn’t go away from our values. We were disappointed in that first game with the way we played in the chase, but it was pretty clear that we were going out with the same intent as we always do,” he added.

England lost the first match by 66 runs even though openers Bairstow and Jason Roy had added 135 runs for the first wicket.

–IANS

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kh/qma

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