Star Indian all-rounder Hardik Pandya has made a remarkable comeback on the international stage. After putting on a great show with the bat and ball and leading debutant Gujarat Titans to their maiden title in IPL 2022, Pandya got a call from selectors for the five-match T20I against South Africa. Notably, Pandya shone with the bat, scoring 480 runs and shutting down his critics by bowling consistent four overs.
Hardik Pandya was not even in the scheme of things before IPL 2022 as the all-rounder had made himself unavailable for selection to work on his fitness. The ex-Mumbai Indians star was recently named skipper of the Indian T20I side for the Ireland tour where they are set to play 2 T20Is — on June 26 and 28.
Hardik Pandya is currently participating in five-match T20I series against South Africa and has been in prime form as he has already played a couple of crucial knocks to rescue the hosts from crunch situations. Ahead of the fourth T20I, Pandya spoke to Star Sports and expressed his happiness over being elected as a skipper for the Ireland tour.
“I kind of knew at the start of this series that I would be leading the side after this series. It’s always an honour to lead your country. Who would have thought 7 months back? Life can change a lot if you put your mind to it and if you keep working hard,” Hardik Pandya said.
Adding further, Hardik confessed that he loves to take up the role of a finisher and enjoys batting lower the order after coming at the top for Gujarat Titans in IPL 2022. “I have always enjoyed the finisher’s role. Wherever I bat, you need to enjoy the situation, I enjoy the challenge. For me, it comes naturally because the rewards are as big as the challenges as well,” he stated,
Hardik Pandya also admitted that he is ready to roll his arm over for the team and that he is working hard on his fitness to make sure he is a reliable 6th bowling option for the team. “Whenever my team requires it, I will always be ready to bowl a couple of overs and it’s just that I didn’t bowl in the last game because our bowlers were fantastic and my services were not needed,” he further said.
The Indian vice-captain for the South Africa series also shared that it’s always important in T20I to play with 6 bowling options and he feels he is the perfect 6th bowling option in this team.