“Who In This Country…”: Ex-BCCI Chief Selector’s Clear Verdict On Hardik Pandya

File photo of Hardik Pandya© AFP

There was a lot of speculation regarding Hardik Pandya‘s inclusion in the India squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup 2024 and a lot of people on social media were caught by surprise when he was named vice-captain for the competition. Hardik has recently faced a lot of criticism for his form in the IPL 2024 and Mumbai Indians’ disappointing performance has also raised questions over his leadership. However, former BCCI chief selector MSK Prasad believes that Hardik becoming the vice-captain was the right move and there is no other fast bowling all-rounder in the country at the moment like Hardik.

“I don’t think there is a second thought on Hardik’s inclusion and also being made the vice-captain of the side. He was given the mantle of captaincy when Rohit was not there. So that clearly indicated that he was next in line for leadership. The selectors made the right decision by picking him. Tell me, who in this country now is a better fast bowling all-rounder than Hardik?” Prasad said on RevSportz.

“Yes, he has been struggling with his form in recent times. But let us be fair as well; there is so much that has happened. Change of leadership in Mumbai, unfortunately, has affected his form as well. But once he puts on the Indian jersey, he can leave his IPL form behind. And once again, I repeat that Hardik Pandya is the best fast bowling all-rounder in the country now no matter what the pundits say,” he added.

Hardik was out of action since the Cricket World Cup 2023 due to injury and his return has not been great with dismal performances in IPL 2024. However, Prasad said that Hardik will bounce back before the World Cup.

“I think Hardik will come out of it. I am sure both will give their best. Once they are in the Indian team, their roles will change as well. In Mumbai Indians, Hardik is struggling because of a role clarity. At Gujarat Titans, he was very comfortable with the role he was assigned but suddenly in Mumbai Indians where they have so many super-stars, he is struggling to find a perfect batting order for himself. There seems to be no clarity in his role. He will not have to worry about that in the Indian team,”

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