Tag Archives: Hardik Pandya

Hardik Pandya likely to lead Ahmedabad franchise in upcoming IPL seson: Reports

Former Mumbai Indians all-rounder Hardik Pandya is expected to lead the new Ahmedabad franchise in the upcoming Indian Premier League (IPL) season, likley to get underway in April this year, it has been reported.

Notably, Hardik was not retained by the Rohit Sharma-led Mumbai Indians ahead of the mega auction and was released by the five-time IPL champions.

As per reports, Hardik, who hails from Baroda in Gujarat, will lead the Ahmedabad franchise, owned by CVC Capital. however, an official confirmation on it is yet to be made by the franchise.

Meanwhile, several other reports have also suggested that former Indian seamer Ashish Nehra, who had earlier worled with Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) as its assistant coach. is likely to be named as the head coach of the Ahmedabad franchise.

Moreover, the Ahmedabad franchise, which is owned by the CVC Sports, is also looking to acquired the services of star Afghanistan all-rounder Rashid Khan and former MI wicketkeeper-batter Ishan Kishan.

Notably, CVC was one of two companies to have won bids to own the two new franchises in the cash-rich league from upcoming season.

Earlier in October last year, the Sanjeev Goenka-owned RPSG group and international investment firm – CVC Capital had bagged the ownership rights of the two new franchises of the IPL for Rs 7090 crores and 5625 crores respectively.

However, CVC Sports acquisition of the Ahmedabad franchise in the league had come under scanner following its association with the Milan-based betting company.

Significantly, CVC’s acquisition of the Ahmedabad franchise had raised many questions following which there has been a delay from the Indian board in handing the Letter of Intent to CVC.

CVC, an American firm, has been trying its best to explain to the Indian board that their investment in a UK betting firm is not illegal.

As per reports, the CVC had later tried to convince the BCCI that its investment in betting firm, which has become a bone of contention, is not illegal and moreover, few top CVC officials had flown to India to have talks with the BCCI office-bearers.

After CVC had acquired one of the two franchise, former IPL chairman Lalit Modi ruffled a few feathers by drawing attention to the companies association with the Milan-based betting company Sisal. “I guess betting companies can buy an IPL team. must be a new rule. apparently, one qualified bidder also owns a big betting company. what next? does BCCI not do their homework? what can Anti-corruption do in such a case? #cricket,” Modi had tweetd.

Later, the Indian board reportedly discussed the CVC Sports matter to the Solicitor General of India – Tushar Mehta – who represents the board in matters not involving the Government of India and reports suggested that the initial recommendation from Solicitor General was believed to be positive.

On Monday, it was reported that the new franchises of the IPL have received the virtual clearance from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) however, the formal clearance will be given handed to them after a meeting of the Indian Premier League (IPL) Governing Council (GC) on Tuesday (January 11).

“The two teams have been cleared and we will issue the Letter of Intent (LoI) after tomorrow’s GC meeting. The teams are through by all practical purposes,” IPL chairman Brijesh Patel was quoted as saying Cricbuzz.

Hardik refutes reports of Rs 5 crore watch seized by Mumbai airport customs

India all-rounder Hardik Pandya on Tuesday refuted reports of his two luxury watches worth Rs 5 crore being seized by Mumbai airport customs as he had failed to produce bills and said that he had voluntarily went to the customs to declare the items brought by him and pay the requisite customs duty.

Meanwhile, in a statement, Hardik also said that the cost of the watch is approximately Rs 1.5 crore and not Rs. 5 crore as claimed by the media and also said that all purchase related documents were submitted to the customs department.

“Early on Monday morning, 15th November, on my arrival from Dubai, after picking up my luggage, I voluntarily went to Mumbai airport customs counter to declare the items brought by me and pay the requisite customs duty,” Hardik said in a statement.

“I had voluntarily declared all the items that I’d lawfully purchased from Dubai and was ready to pay whatever duties that needed to be paid. As a matter of fact, the customs department had asked for all purchase documents which were submitted; however customs is doing proper valuation for duty which I’ve already confirmed to pay,” he added.

The all-rounder also said that the cost of the watch is approximately Rs 1.5 crore and not Rs. 5 crore as per the rumours floating on social media platforms.

“I’m a law-abiding citizen of the country and I respect all government agencies,” he said adding that he has received all the cooperation from the Mumbai customs department and he has assured his full cooperation to them and will provide them with whatever legitimate documents they need to get the matter cleared.

“All allegations against me of crossing any legal boundaries are totally unfounded,” Pandya added.

Significantly, the incident happened when Hardik was returning from Dubai after participating in the just concluded T20 World Cup 2021 where the Virat Kohli-led India were knocked out of the showpiece event T20 World Cup after facing two defeats in their opening two games against Pakistan and New Zealand respectively.

Hardik’s brother Krunal Pandya was also intercepted at the Mumbai International Airport over suspicion of being in possession of undisclosed gold and other valuables in November last year.

Krunal was detained on arrival from Dubai, where he had for gone participating in the IPL 2020. As per reports, Krunal was carrying about three-four watches of high-end brands.

After arriving to Mumbai by a chartered commercial Indigo aircraft from Dubai, Krunal was detained by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) officials at the airport for possession of undisclosed high-end watches and gold.

T20 World Cup: Hardik starts bowling at net sessions

In what could come as a huge relief for the Virat Kohli-led Team India, all-rounder Hardik Pandya has finally started bowling in the nets in Dubai.

The development meanwhile, also raises the possibility of Hardik bowling atleast couple of overs in India’s crucial T20 World Cup affair against New Zealand on October 31 (Sunday) in Dubai as the Men in Blue is missing the comfort of a sixth bowler.

Earlier during India’s tour of Sri Lanka in July this year, Hardik had bowled 16 overs across three ODIs and one T20I however, he had refrained from bowling even a single over in the UAE leg of the recently concluded Indian Premier League (IPL) season for his side Mumbai Indians.

Later during India’s campaign opener against arch-rivals Pakistan on October 24, Hardik had also hurt his shoulder while batting and did not take the field following which Ishan Kishan fielded for the all-rounder.

Hardike was then immediately rushed for precautionary scans.

Later, the all-rounder was reportedly declared fit and was likley available for selection against New Zealand.

On Wednesday, Hardik went through fitness drills and was overseen by strength and conditioning coach Sohum Desai and physio Nitin Patel.

As per reports, Hardik also bowled nearly for 20 minutes to Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Shardul Thakur in the nets and was monitored by head coach Ravi Shastri and mentor MS Dhoni. Later, the all-rounder took throwdowns from batting coach Vikram Rathour in the nets.

Earlier before the contest against Pakistan, Hardik had said that he would likely bowl in the games closer to the knockout stage.

“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,” Hardik had said ahead of the game against Pakistan.

With the Kohli-led Team India now aiming to beat New Zealand to keep their knockout hopes alive following the crushing 10-wicket defeat against Pakistan, it is most likley that the team management would opt for some change in the Playing XI on Sunday.

As per reports, either Shardul Thakur or Ishan Kishan might get a chance in place of Hardik.

It is most likley that Shardul would be preferred over Ishan as he along with bowling, he can also be handy with the bat down the order.

After New Zealand, India will face Afghanistan on November 3 in Abu Dhabi. The Men in Blue will then face Scotland and Namibia on November 5 and 8 in Dubai.

The two semifinals of the showpiece event will be held on November 10 and November 11 with the final to be played on November 14 in Dubai.

India is currently placed fifth in the six-team Group 2 standings of the Super 12 stage after their humiliating defeat against the Babar Azam-led side.

Pakistan, which has won both their games so far, is seated at the top with four points in their kitty and are followed by Afghanistan, Namibia and New Zealand respectively.

Scotland, which has lost both their games, is at the bottom.

T20 World Cup: Hardik Pandya declared fit, available for New Zealand Game

India all-rounder Hardik Pandya has been reportedly declared fit and would be now available for selection for the Men in Blue’s next T20 World Cup affair against New Zealand on Sunday (October 31).

Pandya had picked up the injury on his right shoulder in the blockbluster clash against arch-rivals Pakistan on october 24 while batting following which the all-rounder was immediately rushed for precautionary scans and could not participate further in the game.

In his place, Ishan Kishan took the field for India against Pakistan.

It would now be interesting to see whether he will be included in the Playing XI as he has not been bowling in the recent times while his batting has also been not up to the mark.

Notably, several questions have been raised over Hardik, who has refrained from bowling since a long time and the all-rounder also didn’t bolwed a single over in the recently concluded season of Indian Premier League (IPL).

Later before the warm-up game against Australia, Rohit Sharma had said that Hardik might bowl against Pakistan.

“Hardik is coming along pretty well, but it’ll be a while before he will start to bowl. He hasn’t started bowling, but he should be ready by the start of the tournament,” Rohit had said at the toss for the warm-up match against Australia on October 20.

“We have quality in the main bowlers, but you need an option for a sixth bowler,” he had added.

However, Hardik didn’t bowled a single over against Pakistan as he had already left the field after being injured while batting.

He had himself confirmed before the start of the game that he won’t bowl.

“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,” Hardik had said ahead of the game against Pakistan.

With Hardik now bowling, India had missed the services of a sixth bowler as they suffered a humiliating 10-wicket defeat against Pakistan. Notably, it was also for the first time in World Cup history when India had tasted a defeat against Paksistan.

With the Virat Kohli-led Team India now aiming to beat New Zealand to keep their knockout hopes alive following the crushing defeat against Pakistan, it is most likley that the team management would opt for some change in the Playing XI on Sunday. As per reports, either Shardul Thakur or Ishan Kishan might get a chance in place of Hardik.

It is most likley that Shardul would be preferred over Ishan as he alowng with bowling, he can also be handy with the bat down the order.

After New Zealand, India will face Afghanistan on November 3 in Abu Dhabi. The Men in Blue will then face Scotland and Namibia on November 5 and 8 in Dubai.

The two semifinals of the showpiece event will be held on November 10 and November 11 with the final to be played on November 14 in Dubai.

Hardik Pandya expected to bowl against Pakistan, hints Rohit Sharma

Team Indian vice-captain Rohit Sharma has hinted that all-rounder Hardik Pandya might bowl when their side begins its T20 World Cup campaign against arch-rivals Pakistan on October 24 at the Dubai International Cricket stadium in Dubai.

Sharma, who led the India in their second warm-up game against Australia, had said his side needs the services of a sixth bowler.

Notably, several questions have been raised over Hardik, who has refrained from bowling since a long time and the all-rounder also didn’t bolwed a single over in the recently concluded season of Indian Premier League (IPL).

“Hardik is coming along pretty well, but it’ll be a while before he will start to bowl. He hasn’t started bowling, but he should be ready by the start of the tournament,” Rohit had said at the toss for the warm-up match against Australia couple of days back.

“We have quality in the main bowlers, but you need an option for a sixth bowler,” he added.

“We want to make sure that we get the sixth bowling option, some options in the batting order as well, we’ll try all those things today,” he had said.

In the recent times, Hardik’s fitness has been a cause of concern for the Men in Blue. It was due to his fitness which had forced the selectors to make a change in their 15-memeber squad for the T20 World Cup as Shardul Thakur, who was in the reserves, was bought in place of spinner Axar Patel because the Mumbai cricketer was the only seamer in the squad who can also be handy with the willow.

Recently, former India opener Gautam Gambhir had said that Hardik, not bowling could a big concern for the Kohli-led side.

“If I have to go with just five bowlers, then I will pick Ishan Kishan ahead of Hardik Pandya on current form. If you are going with five proper bowlers and six batsmen, Hardik’s form is probably a massive concern. Forget about the bowling, with the bat as well,” Gambhir had said on Star Sports show Gameplan.

“For me, Hardik Pandya gets into India’s playing XI only if he does proper bowling in both warmup games, not only in the nets. There is a huge difference between bowling in the nets and against quality batsmen like Babar Azam and that too in the World Cup,” he had added.

After beating England in their first warm-up fixture by seven wickets, the Men in Blue once again produced an all-round display as they had thrashed Australia by eight wickets in their second practise game.

India will now play Pakistan in the blockbuster clash of the showpiece event on October 24 in Dubai.

The Men In Blue, placed in the second group, will next face New Zealand on October 31 at the same venue before facing Afghanistan on November 3 in Abu Dhabi.

India will then take on the two of the four qualifiers on November 5 and 8 in Dubai.

The two semifinals will be held on November 10 and November 11 with the final to be played on November 14.

Lack of genuine all-rounders in Team India due to extra workload: Laxman

Former Indian batsman VVS Laxman feels that too much workload of the Indian cricketers is the reason why the country has not produced another genuine all-rounder like Kapil Dev.

Significantly, cricketers like Hardik Pandya have been constantly compared with legendary Kapil, the country’s first World Cup-winning captain.

Attending a YouTube book-launch session at “Tata Literature Live Sports Yatras”, Laxman said: “It’s a very difficult role being an all-rounder. Kapil paaji was someone who could take wickets and score runs. He was the ultimate match-winner for India. But with the amount of workload nowadays, it’s very, very difficult.”

“There were some glimpses from some players, because they were focusing a lot on both the skills, ultimately with the amount of workload and matches the Indian team plays in three formats, it’s very difficult to manage. That player who has the ability to become a genuine all-rounder unfortunately gets injured and he has to compromise or he has to take a decision on either batting or bowling,” he added.

Meanwhile, Laxman also urged to not compare any all-rounder with the legendary Kapil.

“I just feel that there can be only one Kapil. It (comparison) will put undue pressure on the player. There can be only one MS Dhoni, or one Sunil Gavaskar,” he opined.

Laxman also backed Rishabh Pant to be India’s first choice wicketkeeper for the T20 World Cup, slated to be held in October-November saying: “India is spoilt for choices. The way Sanju Samson has batted, kept and led Rajasthan Royals (in ongoing IPL), even though he did not have too much of experience (in captaining) a side.”

“Then there’s Ishan Kishan. KL Rahul has done well whenever he got the gloves, and batted either top of the order or in the middle. But somehow I just feel Rishabh Pant is the player whom you should pick for the wicketkeeper-batsman slot. I will definitely go for Pant,” Laxman added.

“Not only that he’s really improved and impressed everyone with his keeping abilities, but as a left-handed batsman, he’s someone who can take away the game from any opposition in any situation in the middle overs,” he concluded.

IPL 2021: Aakash Chopra decsribes why MI is the most dominant team

Having won the coveted trophy five times, Mumbai Indians (MI) is undoubtedly the most successful side in the Indian Premier League (IPL) history.

With the likes of skipper Rohit Sharma, Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Ishan Kishan, Jasprit Bumrah and others, the MI once again looks like the team to beat in the upcoming edition of IPL 2021, getting underway on April 9 in Chennai.

Former India batsman and commentator Aakash Chopra talked about Mumbai Indians as why they are so dominant in the IPL.

Highlighting the strengths of MI, Chopra said on his Facebook page: “The Indian core is the Mumbai Indians’ biggest strength and it is not only a core but one which can do the encore. You have Rohit Sharma, Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Hardik, Krunal, Bumrah and Rahul Chahar, they are the players who are going to play hundred percent in the playing XI and they are all match-winners in their own right.”

“Which team has this kind of Indian core, you will not get one of this quality anywhere because you may not find a better batsman than Rohit Sharma in white-ball cricket, a better bowler than Bumrah, and a better all-rounder than Hardik. Krunal is matching him shoulder to shoulder, Ishan Kishan and Suryakumar Yadav have been absolute revelations,” added Chopra.

“Their second huge strength is Rohit Sharma’s captaincy. He is 24-carat-gold, the best-cut diamond who knows very well how to read the game. From his face you will not be able to figure out which way the match is heading, he remains a little poker-faced but the good thing is he has the ability to control the flow of the game, which is easier said than done,” said Chopra.

“The third thing is that they have one of the finest fast bowling attacks. They have Bumrah, Trent Boult, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Dhawal Kulkarni. Only one team can match their fast bowling repertoire and that is Delhi, who have Nortje and Kagiso Rabada. But they also don’t have an Indian replacement for Bumrah because there is only one Bumrah and Bhuvi is with Sunrisers Hyderabad,” concluded Chopra.

Significantly, having won the the trophy in 2019 and 2020, MI have the chance to script history as they would become the only team to win the tournament thrice in a row.