Hardik Pandya, the striker, showed glimpses of what he is capable of at the big stage this year.
Pandya’s consistency in playing the key innings earned appreciation from many former cricketers. “Pandya has made it a habit of playing the big impact innings. Seeing one currently. Amazing stuff,” tweeted Sanjay Manjrekar.
He showcased hitting prowess yet again in his Test series against Sri Lanka smashing a sensational hundred batting at No-8.
After debuting in the limited over competitions, he made his debut in Test cricket on the tour of Sri Lanka and started off with a fifty. To take that up a notch, he added a century in the third Test.
But 2017 has seen Pandya turn a leaf. Where in 2016 Pandya scored 123 runs and picked up 19 wickets in 20 matches, this year he has scored 710 runs and picked up 30 wickets in 31 matches.
Kohli termed Pandya’s self-belief as his biggest strength. “Pandya believes in himself and that is the key in international cricket. Hardik’s innings was the game-changer and he is smart with the ball as well,” said Kohli.
Australia were pretty much in control till then and it was Pandya’s attack that took the game away from them. Aussie skipper Steve Smith felt the pinch, but he was prompt to acknowledge that “Hardik looked like hitting everyone of those for a six.”