SL v IND 2021: Irfan Pathan hopes for Hardik Pandya's return to form soon

Hardik is going through a poor form in the ongoing white-ball tour of Sri Lanka.

Hardik Pandya is yet to register his maiden fifty for India in T20I cricket | Getty

Hardik Pandya, also known as the ‘Kung-Fu Pandya’ among the fans, has been Team India’s go to pace all-rounder over the years across all formats. With his hard-hitting down the order and pace-bowling ability, Hardik seemed to have solved India’s lower middle-order troubles.

But with the shoulder injury in 2019, the hard-hitting batsman has already been out of the Test squad. With poor run of form in the limited-overs formats as well, fans are now wondering if Pandya can step up his game and fix his spot in the white-ball squad.

Hardik smashed the bowlers all around the park in IPL 2019 but after recovering from his shoulder injury later that year, he has not been bowling much and hasn’t been among runs either. The stylish batter scored just 281 runs in 14 matches in IPL 2020 edition.

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The year 2021 has been even worse so far, as Pandya has managed to score just 52 runs in 7 matches played this year in IPL. The all-rounder had an average run in T20Is against England earlier this year, scoring just 86 runs in 5 matches and bagging only 3 wickets.

With questions being raised on Hardik’s fitness to bowl in the limited-overs format and his poor run with the bat, former Indian pace all-rounder Irfan Pathan tweeted, saying that he wishes to see Hardik Pandya return to his prime form and fitness.

India is currently touring Sri Lanka for a white-ball series, but Pandya has not had any decent outing so far with just 19 runs in the three-match ODI series. Hardik got out early again in the first T20I of the three-match series, but with two games still to be played, the all-rounder will look to get among some runs and return to form.

This is India’s last white-ball series before heading into the IPL and then the ICC T20I World Cup later this year. With both tournaments set to be played in UAE, Pandya will look to get some runs and seal his position in the T20 World Cup squad.


By Vansh Mahajan - 26 Jul, 2021

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