One of the biggest talking points for India in the ongoing T20 World Cup so far has been the fitness of Hardik Pandya. There were concerns around the balance of side with the all-rounder not seen bowling in UAE leg of IPL 2021. Hardik has been struggling with back problem for quite some time now and many cricket experts feared that his presence in the side only as a batsman hampers India’s combination with lack of 6th bowling option.
To add wound to salt, the 28-year-old injured his shoulder while batting against Pakistan in India’s first game of the mega event. With no like-to-like replacement in the squad, fans feared what the Men in Blue would do going ahead in the tournament. However, an extremely good news came from Indian camp on Wednesday.
Hardik Pandya passes fitness test
Hardik Pandya notably passed the fitness test and was declared fully fit to take part in the training session at ICC Academy in Dubai. As reported by ANI, the all-rounder was seen running and sprinting as he trained under the supervision of India’s strength and conditioning coaches – Nick Webb and Soham Desai.
Much to the excitement of all fans, the right-arm medium pacer was also captured bowling on Wednesday. Although he bowled with a shortened run-up, the signs were encouraging for everyone. He notably spent around 15 minutes bowling in the nets, a small footage of which was shared by the broadcasters.
Watch the video here:
Dhoni passed instructions to Hardik during training session
Apart from returning to bowling, Hardik Pandya notably also spent some time batting in the nets. He hit some big hits during the throw-down session. Interestingly, there was reportedly also a brief moment when team mentor MS Dhoni passed on some instructions to the all-rounder from the side of nets.
The right-handed batsman, who scored 11 off 8 against Pakistan, would certainly benefit from the advise of MSD who has been one of the best-ever finishers the country has ever produced. As Hardik is playing a similar role for India batting lower down the order, he would be hoping to produce the goods when India lock horns with New Zealand on October 31 in what could be a do-or-die encounter for Men in Blue.