Updated June 10th, 2024 at 12:56 IST

The CLUTCH MAN of India: Hardik Pandya leaves behind MI horror in IPL, proves why he is Undroppable

In IPL, all-rounder Hardik Pandya was deemed as a villain. But he has now risen from the ashes to emerge as a hero for India in their T20 World Cup campaign.

Reported by: Pavitra Shome
Hardik Pandya | Image: Star Sports (Screengrab)
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Hardik Pandya had a lot to prove after he was named in the Indian Cricket Team's 15-man side for the ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2024. The all-rounder was heavily criticized throughout the IPL 2024 season and was seen to be reportedly embroiled in a personal conflict as well. But as the T20 World Cup commences, Pandya has now proved his worth as a credible all-rounder and vice-captain of the Indian Cricket Team after playing two matches against India and Ireland. He also made himself worthwhile and has officially proved that he is a cricketer who cannot be dropped from the national side unless injured.

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From Undesirable to Undeniable: Hardik Pandya emerges from the IPL ashes for national duty and proves why he is undroppable

Indian all-rounder Hardik Pandya was getting exposed to a lot of criticism after it was revealed that he was heading to his boyhood IPL franchise, the Mumbai Indians, in the 2024 season. Things turned haywire after he replaced Rohit Sharma as the skipper. The fans went berserk on him as Pandya was booed throughout the game, irrespective of the location they played. Not just the away fans, but MI's home attendance was also against the dubious move. The Mumbai-based IPL franchise also had a forgetful campaign under the new captaincy regime under Pandya and was the first side to be kicked off the playoffs stage. Hardik needed a rebound, and the ICC Men's T20 World Cup was the ideal destination for him to make it happen.

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India's Hardik Pandya celebrates with his teammates after taking a wicket at eh ICC Men's T20 World Cup group stage match between India and Pakistan at the Nassau County International Stadium in New York | Image: BCCI
    

As it turns out, playing for the national side gave Hardik Pandya an absolute boost in terms of morale. In the two matches he has played for Team India, the all-rounder has caused mayhem with the ball. In two matches, the all-rounder has amassed five crucial wickets to his name and has helped derail the opposition batters. While he is yet to contribute big numbers with the bat, Pandya's aid in the bowling side has been nothing less than exemplary for the Indian Cricket Team.

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Team India has the chance to ease into the Super 8 stage, but they have two matches on the road. The Rohit Sharma-led side will face the blazing co-hosts USA on June 12 at the Nassau County Stadium, and then they will head to Dallas for the final group-stage clash against Canada at the Grand Prairie Stadium in Texas. Winning both matches will be vital for India as they will be in abundance of motivation before heading to West Indies for the next stage and play against some of the top cricketing powerhouses in the marquee tournament.

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Published June 10th, 2024 at 12:48 IST