Indian all-rounder Hardik Pandya revealed that him turning into an all-rounder from a batsman was pure luck and had just bowled for one year before getting into the Indian team.
Pandya made his debut for India in January 2016 against Australia in the first T20I match and was also roped in by the selectors to play for the 2016 World Cup at home.
Before I played for India, I had bowled for probably one year only: Hardik Pandya
Since then the Mumbai Indians star player has been India’s no.1 all-rounder in white-ball cricket and has also turned many games for the team from a losing point. Pandya said that he became an all-rounder by chance and would bat at no.3 in the U19 team.
“I became an all-rounder by chance. It was pure luck. The transition took place when I was 19. Before I played for India, I had bowled for probably one year only. When I started bowling, I was helping out my U19 bowlers because they were tired by bowling so much. I was a batsman who used to bat at No.3. I used to borrow their shoes also because I didn’t have fast-bowling shoes,” Pandya told Hindustan Times’ virtual HT NxT.
“Sharath Kumar sir was watching our U19 practice from some 200 meters away. The next day he came to watch our local game, where I played for Kiran More Academy. It was a green top and no fast bowler was available. I borrowed someone’s shoes and got a five-for in that game. That’s why I say it’s luck by chance. Sharath sir then took me a month sir in the Ranji Trophy squad. Before that, I didn’t bowl,” he added.
I have always focused on contributing to all departments: Hardik Pandya
On Wednesday, the Board of Control of Cricket in India (BCCI) announced a 15-member squad for the mega event to be played next month in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Hardik Pandya was included along with Ravindra Jadeja and Axar Patel as the team’s all-rounder.
India’s national chief selector Chetan Sharma said that Pandya is fit and available to bowl his full quota overs in the tournament. Pandya said he has given his best to contribute in each department and needs to work on his bowling a lot.
“I don’t look at the result at the end of the day, for me, it’s more about the process. As an all-rounder, I have always focused on contributing to all departments. I needed to work on my bowling a lot. When I came in, I didn’t have much idea about what balls to bowl, what variations to have in the armoury. I started from the basics. I worked on my accuracy, bowled on a good length, and with time I was able to learn the variations as well,” Pandya said.
Pandya has scored 484 runs from 49 matches in T20Is and picked 42 wickets in the shortest format.