Hardik Pandya has finally broken his silence after his sensational return to Mumbai Indians from Gujarat Titans in arguably the biggest trade in the history of the Indian Premier League (IPL). After a number of twists and turns, the transfer saga finally came to an end on Sunday (November 26).
While speculations were rife that the India star would move to Mumbai Indians, Gujarat Titans stunned everyone by announcing that they have retained the player. With the retention deadline passed, Hardik Pandya looked set to play at least one more season for the Gujarat-based outfit before Mumbai Indians sprung a huge surprise by completing the deal.
They first traded their allrounder Cameron Green to Royal Challengers Bangalore in an all-cash deal to raise the money required for the transfer before sealing Hardik Pandya’s return. The allrounder has now expressed his excitement over returning to Mumbai Indians. In a video posted by Mumbai Indians on social media platform ‘X’, the India star said that returning back to his first IPL team is very special.
“Rohit, Bumrah, Surya, Ishan, Polly, Malinga. Come on, let’s begin. Obviously the feel of coming back to Mumbai is very special for a lot of reasons. How my cricketing journey started in 2015 with MI, them noticing me in 2013. You know when I look back and how my span of 10 years has been something very special,” said Hardik Pandya.
“It has not sunk in yet that finally I’m back where my whole cricketing journey started. I have achieved all the possible things. They have been the most important part of my life. Special bond with Akash (Ambani) and the whole family. They’ve been with my through thick and thin and it’s much more emotional because it feels like I am coming back home, and my family where it all started,” he added.
— Mumbai Indians (@mipaltan) November 27, 2023
Hardik Pandya’s IPL career so far:
Hardik Pandya began his IPL career in 2015 with Mumbai Indians. He enjoyed seven highly successful seasons with the franchise before being released in 2022. In those seven seasons, he helped Mumbai Indians win as many as four titles.
In the last two seasons, he plied his trade for Gujarat Titans. Hardik Pandya led the team in both the seasons and made a huge impact as a captain. In his maiden season with Gujarat Titans, he led them to IPL title before helping them to make it to the final this year.