NZ v IND 2022: WATCH - ‘Sabko mauka milega’ Hardik Pandya assures Samson-Umran will get their opportunities

India won the T20I series 1-0 after a tie at Napier.

Hardik Pandya led India in New Zealand | Getty Images

India continued their unbeaten run in bilateral T20I cricket with a 1-0 series victory in New Zealand, after the third and final match was tied (DLS method) due to rain. India did not lose any bilateral T20I series in 2022, but the sore points remained them not making the final of the Asia Cup and T20 World Cup.

Much was expected that fresher faces, especially Sanju Samson and Umran Malik would get their opportunities in the T20I series following the disappointment of the semifinal exit in Australia, but India chose to persist with the players who were part of the T20I set up in recent times despite the absence of several senior players on the tour.

The decision to not hand out opportunities surprised the fans in particular and disappointed many who were hoping to see India experiment.

When asked about the same at a post-match press conference on Tuesday (November 22), stand-in captain Hardik Pandya cited the short series, and explained the selection policy he and the head coach applied, adding that everyone will eventually get their chances and it will be ensured that the players get a fair run.

“Pahli baat toh bahar kaun kya bol raha hai usse ye level pe fadak nahi padta. Ye meri team hai, coach aur mujhe jo theek lagega, jo side hume chahie hoga (hum wo khilayenge). Bohut samay hai. Sabko mauka milega aur jab mauka milega lamba milega. Agar bada series hota, zyada matches hote toh obviously opportunities zyada hote. Ye chhota series tha, main zyada chop and change mein believe nahi karta aur aage bhi believe nahi karunga. (First things first, who is saying what outside, doesn't really affect us at this level. This is my team and I'll pick the best side after discussing with the coach. There is ample of time. Everyone will get their chances and when they do, it will be a long run. This was a small series, if we had more matches then we could have tried out more players),”

READ ALSO: “I felt attack is the best defence on this wicket”- Hardik Pandya after India wins T20I series 1-0

Hardik was also asked about his captaincy philosophy and whether in future he would ask his batters to attack from the first ball and try to follow his style of aggressive batting.

“To be honest, I have tried my best to give freedom to my players so that they can go out and express himself. Whosoever has come here to play international cricket, he has played many games before. So, the same ideology was there in the World Cup. Obviously, things we couldn’t implement are getting highlighted. But going forward, we won’t play with a single mindset. The mandate would be to go, enjoy, and if you feel like hitting right from the first ball, just hit. The player will have the full support and will be backed thoroughly,” he said.

Hardik also reflected on Deepak Hooda's impressive showing with the ball as the sixth bowling option while chosing not to bowl himself in the series.

“Jaise mujhe sixth bowling option chahie tha aur woh cheez is tour mein aya hai jaise Deepak ne ball dala hai. Thoda thoda karke agar aise batsman chip in karte rahenge (with the ball) toh aapke paas bohut sare mauke honge naye bowlers use karke opponents ko surprise karne ka. (For example, I wanted a sixth bowling option and Deepak did that very well. If the batters start to chip in with the ball then we will have options to surprise the opposition).” he signed off.

(With Hindustan Times/CricketNext inputs)


By Saurabh Malhotra - 22 Nov, 2022

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