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Fill in the blank with the most appropriate option.
Nick: “Did you see a bird in the tree?”
Nick wonders _______ in the tree.
A) If I saw the bird
B) That I saw the bird
C) If I had seen a bird
D) Whether I see a bird
E) If I have seen a bird

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Last updated date: 20th Jun 2024
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Answer
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Hint: Direct and indirect speech – In direct speech, the actual words of the speaker are quoted (with no change). In indirect speech the actual words of the speaker are changed.

Complete answer:
Option A) If I saw the bird – is the correct answer because, in the question it starts directly with did, so if is used in the beginning and you is changed to I. Thus, this is the correct answer.
Option B) That I saw the bird – is an incorrect answer because that cannot be used in indirect speech. However, ‘That I saw the bird’ is the unfit answer.
Option C) If I had seen a bird – is an incorrect answer because ‘had’ cannot be used here if we convert direct into indirect speech. However, this is an incorrect answer.
Option D) Whether I see a bird – is an incorrect answer because ‘see’ is inappropriately used if we convert it into indirect speech. Thus, this is an incorrect answer.
Option E) If I have seen a bird - is an incorrect answer because ‘seen’ is inappropriately used if we convert it into indirect speech. Thus, this is an incorrect answer.

So, the correct answer is “Option A-Nick wonders if I saw the bird in the tree.”

Note:
1. In direct speech, the original speaker's exact words are repeated. In indirect/reported speech, the exact meaning is expressed but not necessarily using the original speaker's exact words.
2. Pronouns and possessive adjectives usually change from first or second person to the third person except when the speaker is reporting his own words.
3. When we turn direct questions and exclamations into indirect speech, they are converted to affirmative statements (? and! is not used). The other options are wrong as that, had, see, and have seen can't be used. So, the correct answer is Option A) If I saw a bird.