In the opening Twenty20 encounter of a three-match series on Tuesday, all-rounder Hardik Pandya led Team India to a 2-run victory over Sri Lanka. Hardik has been given the duty of serving as the team’s captain as Rohit Sharma was benched for the series. The all-rounder has already led Gujarat Titans to their first IPL championship and Team India to win against Ireland in a T20I series, both of which were outstanding accomplishments. On the eve of the first T20I, Hardik, who has not played Test cricket since 2018, was questioned about his return to the longest format.
Hardik’s reply left everyone in splits as he said, “When I will be seen in whites? Let me be fully on blues first, then I will see about the whites.” After making his Test debut in July 2017, Hardik played 11 matches and amassed 532 runs. With a peak score of 108, he has a century and four half-centuries to his credit. In addition to this, he has taken 17 Test cricket wickets, including a five-wicket haul.
The Gujarat Titans captain said that he just believes in working hard despite having a full schedule for the entire year that includes numerous international games. “I know the language of hard work. I don’t think I know any other language in my life. I’ve been thrown to the deep end and the only thing that has got me back is my hard work. Keep working hard and make sure I look after my body, which I do,” said Hardik.
“Injuries are a part of the game and I can’t change that. I am very confident of what I’ve done and believe in the process that has brought me here. Going forward, I just want to give my body ample chances to be out there and play my best”, he added. The Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai hosted the opening Twenty20 international match against Sri Lanka. Following the T20I series, a three-match ODI series will start on January 10 in Guwahati.