- Feb 24, 2024
- Dec 28, 2023
The recently concluded India-South Africa series, which ended with a 2-2 draw, brought out some positives for Indian Team. Ishan Kishan, Dinesh Karthik, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, and Harshal Patel shone brightly with their performances. One player, however, who has impressed massively in the last couple of months is Hardik Pandya. Leading his debut franchise Gujarat to their maiden Indian T20 League 2022 title was a massive achievement in his career.
The South African great Graeme Smith has a similar opinion on the Gujarat captain. While talking to Cricket.com, the ex-South Africa captain, said, “Still a lot of cricket is to be played so it is difficult to predict what is going to happen in the next couple of months but you would think that Hardik Pandya and DK are integral to that squad.
The Proteas ex-batter believes that Dinesh Karthik is experienced with finishing roles whereas Pandya has worked on it and improved massively. Explaining the same, he said,
“DK is experienced with that finishing role that he has played. Hardik has grown leaps and bounds and is in control of his game.”
When asked about Pandya’s chances of getting into the 20-20 World Cup side, Smith was confident of his inclusion.
“Mentally he looks like he has settled. He knows how to go about his work and he is also that all-rounder X-Factor that India require to just balance the team with him and Jadeja in the squad which opens up a lot of options, with those two all-rounders. So, I can’t see that those two not making it to the 15 (World Cup squad)” he added.
The Indian team is to take part in two series. The Test team will play against England, meanwhile a second-string ODI white-ball team would test their mettle against the Irish side. Pandya, who impressed all with his captaincy in the Indian T20 League 2022, has been awarded the captaincy role for the Men in Blue for the Ireland tour.