The start of 2019 hasn’t been good for India’s talented all-rounder Hardik Pandya. This happened because of his misogynistic comments in the popular talk-show Koffee With Karan. As a result BCCI also banned him.
But after his ban was lifted he came back to the team in the third ODI against New Zealand at the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui. In that match he took two important wickets and a brilliant catch, which improved his confidence.
Although he faltered in the fourth ODI, but came back stronger in the fifth and the final one at the Westpac Stadium in Wellington. The 25-year-old came to bat at the fag end of India’s innings and scored a quickfire knock of 45 off just 22 balls.
That knock included five sixes too. Later during the Kiwis’ run-chase, the cricketer from Baroda took two crucial wickets. India’s veteran and former off-break bowler Harbhajan Singh believes Hardik’s all-round performance is a positive sign for India.
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Bhajji extremely happy with Hardik’s performance
In an interview to India Today, Harbhajan was all praise for the young all-rounder. He said:
Hardik was fantastic with the bat and of course with the ball. I am so glad to see the kind of form he is in. He put the controversy aside. He made sure that nobody talks about his cricket. I am so glad that he is performing really well and he is a very, very important member of the Indian team.
I am happy for him. He is delivering with the bat and ball and these are good signs for Team India.
India’s Number 4 batsman Ambati Rayudu has been inconsistent off late. But the Guntur-born cricketer was in full form in the final ODI. After scoring two half-centuries in Mount Maunganui, he went on to score 90 runs in Wellington. Bhajji was also happy with Rayudu’s performance.
“Ambati Rayudu has always been a class player. He has got the temperament to score runs in big games and I am really happy with his progress in international cricket. I am so glad he performed really well today. I hope he continues to work hard on his game,” he added.