Hardik Pandya, the TATA IPL 2022 tournament winner, and the captain of the winning team Gujarat Titans, did not have the bed of roses if you see his history before the IPL. Forget playing the Indian National team, the player was languishing to just get an entry inside to play and to prove his mettle back again, which he proved also.
Hardik four years back during a match against Pakistan faced stiffness in his back and was unable to move, the seriousness of the situation was so much that he had to be taken through a stretcher from the field. Have a look at the link below.
But now once he had made a name for himself after winning the IPL, the player has even got a chance to play for the Indian national team. Ashish Nehra who was and is the head coach of the Gujarat Titans team, said that Hardik can play as batter solely for any format but as bowler must be seen as a bonus.
Now why does Nehra have to say this? It is primarily because of the disastrous episode Hardik has had in the past. Nehra says Hardik should now be seen as batting allrounder and not vice-versa. Because as a bowler, one has to go out and out with the bowl and the pace but with Hardik, it is not the story at all now and should be taken as the sixth bowling option in the team, like a trump card. While speaking to the news channel, “The Telegraph’
“Hardik can be in any white ball team solely as a batter. On top of that, if he bowls it will be a bonus. But you can’t keep him as your fifth bowler in T20 or 50 overs. He can only be your sixth bowler,”
He also added,
“He will not be going to the West Indies for ODIs which is good in a way. When you are an out-and-out fast bowler you don’t have a choice. You have to bowl, you have to be fit, but it’s not the case with Hardik. He has been doing well during the last 2-3 months,”
Ashish also shed light if the player (Hardik) can be able to bowl for 10 overs straight, speaking of the ODI format. He said,
“He can bowl 10 overs also in 50-over cricket. But even if he gives 5-6 overs, it’s a huge bonus. Yesterday (Tuesday, 1st ODI) you had four bowlers besides Ravindra Jadeja and Hardik. You are only going to struggle when you look at Hardik as your fifth bowler,”
Now Hardik Pandya will be seen in the T20I series against West Indies starting from July 19th and it will be interesting to see him play once again.
Indian team Squad for the West Indies Tour
Ruturaj Gaikwad, Deepak Hooda, Shikhar Dhawan (Captain), Ishan Kishan (wk), Shubman Gill, Suryakumar Yadav, Sanju Samson (wk), Shreyas Iyer, Ravindra Jadeja (vice-captain),Shardul Thakur, Axar Patel, Yuzvendra Chahal, Prasidh Krishna, Arshdeep Singh, Avesh Khan, Mohd. Siraj
The team seems entirely from the IPL as it is a squad where the names might be from different franchises but are the best from every franchise.