T20 WC: Hardik Pandya to not bowl vs Pakistan, reveals by when he is likely to roll his arms

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Updated: Oct 24, 2021, 07:42 PM IST
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T20 World Cup: Ahead of India's face-off versus Pakistan, Hardik Pandya revealed by when he is expected to roll his arms in the tournament.

Team India fans have been patiently waiting to see Hardik Pandya bowl once again. The all-rounder had undergone a back surgery in late 2019, which ruled him out of action from international cricket for a long time. He returned to competitive cricket in IPL 2020. While he did well with the bat, the 27-year-old didn't bowl a single over in last year's IPL.

On the other hand, Hardik just bowled a handful of overs when Virat Kohli was searching for an extra bowler during the second and penultimate ODI versus Australia, during India's tour of Australia in late 2020. Since then, he hasn't returned to bowling at regular intervals. While he did contribute with the ball in the India-England T20Is, at home, early this year and in the Sri Lanka tour in July, Hardik is playing majorly as a specialist batsman in limited-overs whereas he has gone down the pecking order in Tests after not being available as an all-rounder. In addition, he didn't bowl a single over even in IPL 2021.

Ahead of India's T20 World Cup 2021 opener, versus Pakistan at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium, Dubai on Sunday evening (October 24), Hardik revealed that he won't bowl for the Men in Blue in their opening fixture but revealed his plans going forward. He told the broadcasters, "The back is fine, it was jittery, but I won't be bowling for now. I want to be able to bowl eventually, closer to the knockouts. The professionals and I both have to take the call about when I can have a bowl."

On the much-hyped Indo-Pak cricketing rivalry, Hardik said, "I don't like to get too hyped by the situation, and my family make sure of that too. I stay away from social media because you do get excited and get the vibes. It's simple, and we leave emotions out of the way, and keep things professional. We make sure we tick the right boxes, and do the processes right."

India will need Hardik as a bowler as well if they progress to the semi-finals in the T20 WC 2021. Even if he bowls some overs in the middle-overs, it will help Kohli-led team management. Till then, the ardent Indian cricket fans will hope for Hardik the batsman to go bonkers in the Super 12 round.