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Hardik Pandya Sanjay Manjrekar ICC world Cup 2023 India vs West Indies Pandya form

Curated By: Aakash Biswas

Last Updated: August 21, 2023, 08:33 IST

Hardik Pandya in action (AP Image)

Hardik Pandya in action (AP Image)

A dip in Hardik Pandya’s performance, as compared to 2022, has now become one of the major talking points

India will aim to end their decade-long draught of ICC trophies when they enter the 50-over World Cup, starting October 5. Since the showpiece event is back in India, the expectations from Rohit Sharma and his boys will be a notch higher. The fans will also look up to Hardik Pandya – the all-rounder – who is likely to be the vice-captain of the team. But his current form in white-ball games seems to be a matter of concern, especially after the just-concluded West Indies tour.

The spotlight was on Pandya as he led the team in 2 ODIs and 5 T20Is. While some of his on-field decisions raised a few eyebrows, his average performance – with both bat and ball – was also worrisome. The all-rounder managed scores of 5, 7 and a 70 not out in three 50-over games with just 1 wicket. He ended the T20Is with 77 runs, with a highest score of 24, and bagged 4 wickets. Notably, he remained wicketless in the last three games of the 5-match series.

A dip in Pandya’s performance, as compared to 2022, has now become one of the major talking points. Former India batter Sanjay Manjrekar feels that the 29-year-old has a crucial role to play in the forthcoming World Cup but his current bowling form is a bit of a concern in the lead-up to the ICC event.

“Hardik Pandya’s form is a little bit of concern, his bowling because you will have to do a lot of physical work in the world Cup because you need him as the all-rounder not just a batter so at least 6-7 over per innings is what is expected from him. When India won the world cup in 2011, it was because of people like Suresh Raina and Yuvraj Singh pure batters who bowled a bit, so Hardik Pandya’s bowling is very important,” Manjrekar told Star Sports.

India succumbed to a 3-2 T20I series defeat against the West Indies; their first-ever in a 5-match series. Pandya took responsibility for the team’s defeat to the West Indies. But as the team shifts its focus to the bigger picture – the Asia Cup and the subsequent World Cup – the dashing all-rounder will look to redeem himself and contribute better.

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