KKR vs MI: Hardik Pandya attacked by AB de Villers for Mumbai's downfall; labelled Ego Driven

Updated - 10 May 2024, 12:49 PM

AB de Villiers and Hardik Pandya
AB de Villiers and Hardik Pandya (Image Credits: Twitter)

Former South African captain AB de Villiers criticized all-rounder Hardik Pandya's leadership style for the Mumbai Indians (MI) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 season. AB de Villiers stated that Hardik Pandya's leadership style is ego-driven and not completely genuine for the Mumbai Indians. 

Hardik Pandya replaced long-time skipper Rohit Sharma as skipper of Mumbai ahead of the IPL 2024. However, Pandya hasn't turned the fortunes of the Mumbai Indians in the ongoing tournament. MI became the first team to be eliminated from the tournament, having only four wins in 12 matches.

According to The Indian Express, senior players are unhappy with the Mumbai Indians' performance in the IPL 2024 under Hardik Pandya's leadership. They have reportedly raised concerns with the coaching staff regarding Pandya's leadership style and the lack of energy in the dressing room.

Captaincy Style Of Hardik Pandya Is Quite Bravado - AB de Villiers

Speaking on his YouTube channel, AB de Villiers stated that Hardik Pandya's leadership style worked for a younger team like the Gujarat Titans (GT) than for an experienced franchise like MI. He described Pandya's captaincy as ego-driven and compared it to MS Dhoni's calm and collected approach.

"The captaincy style of Hardik Pandya is quite bravado. It's ego-driven in a way, chest out. I don't think how he walks on the field is always genuine, but he has decided that is his way of captaincy. Almost like MS. Cool, calm, collective, always got your chest out.

"But when you play with a lot of experienced players, guys who have been around for ages... They don't buy into that. It worked at GT, where it was a younger team. Sometimes, inexperienced players love to follow that kind of leadership," said De Villiers.

Hardik Pandya has failed to make an impact with the bat and ball. The 30-year-old batter has scored 198 runs at an average of 19.80 and a strike rate of 147.76, with a best score of 46. The right-arm pacer has taken 11 wickets in 12 matches at an average of 29.82 and an economy rate of 10.58.

He Was Out There For The Team - AB de Villiers

AB de Villiers stated that senior players like Rohit Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah prefer a more composed approach from Hardik Pandya rather than his 'bravado.'

"I remember Graeme Smith. He was out there for the team. All I needed to do as a youngster was to follow. Now there's a Rohit, there's a Bumrah. They go like, 'All we need you to be is calm. Give us a bit of input on how to win matches. We don't need the bravado. I'm not having a go at Hardik. I love watching him play. I love him putting out his chest because I was like that," added de Villiers.

Before assuming the role of MI captain, Hardik led GT to secure a title and finish as runners-up in the 2022 and 2023 editions, respectively. The five-time champions aim to conclude the season on a positive note in their upcoming matches against the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and Lucknow Super Giants (LSG).

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