‘This is what happens when….’: Sourav Ganguly’s blunt take on Mumbai Indians fans booing Hardik Pandya

Former Team India skipper Sourav Ganguly came in Hardik Pandya’s strong defense on Saturday and asked the cricket fans to not boo the new Mumbai Indians skipper. Sourav Ganguly praised Rohit Sharma and said he is a player of a different class, but it’s Mumbai Indians that has replaced him with Hardik Pandya. The veteran batters’ remarks came as Hardik Pandya faced hostile crowds in MI’s IPL 2024 campaign, as fans criticized him for replacing Rohit Sharma as Mumbai’s skipper.

“I don’t think they should boo Hardik Pandya. It’s not correct. The franchise has appointed him as captain,” Sourav Ganguly told reporters in Mumbai on Saturday.

Hardik Pandya came under intense criticism after he returned to Mumbai Indians after successfully leading Gujrat Titans in IPL 2022 and 2023. As per the reports, Hardik Pandya tied his return to Mumbai Indians with the captaincy of the team, which meant Rohit Sharma had to step down from the role of MI skipper. The developments irked MI fans, who backed Rohit Sharma, as he led the franchise to its five IPL titles.

Backing Hardik Pandya, Sourav Ganguly said that it is not a player’s fault that he is appointed as captain. The selectors and the management of the team are responsible for such decisions, Ganguly explained. “This is what happens in sports whether you captain India or a state or a franchise you are appointed captain…” the former batter said.

‘Rohit Sharma has a different class ’

While praising former MI skipper Rohit Sharma, Sourav Ganguly said that he is a player of a different class with next-level performance for Mumbai Indians and Indian cricket team. Sourav Ganguly further added that Mumbai Indians is a strong team and it’s okay in T20 format to lose 2-3 games.

“Obviously Rohit Sharma has a different class. His performance as a captain and player for the franchise and for India has been on a different level. It’s not Hardik’s fault that he has been appointed as captain. All of us need to understand that,” Ganguly said.

“Mumbai is a good team. We expect them to play well. They have been quality side for many years. T20 is a format where you can lose 2-3 games on the bounce. This is their home, a great venue. It’s gonna be a good game,” Ganguly said.

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Published: 06 Apr 2024, 06:07 PM IST

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