Mumbai Indians’ Hardik Pandya launched a stunning onslaught against Rajasthan Royals’ Kartik Tyagi and Ankit Rajpoot to lift his side to an imposing 195. Hardik Pandya put on an exhibition of sixes as he hit seven sixes in his 21-ball 60 to punish Rajasthan Royals’ fielding and bowling lapses. The 26-year old underlined that he was looking forward to this very innings.
Rajasthan Royals unsettled Mumbai Indians marginally midway in the innings as they lost two quick wickets in Suryakumar Yadav and Kieron Pollard, dismissed by Shreyas Gopal. Mumbai Indians had a good start despite losing Quinton De Kock as Ishan Kishan and Suryakumar Yadav built a partnership of more than 70 runs in nine overs. Hence, after losing two quick scalps, it was upto the finishers.
And Hardik Pandya delivered. In the 17th over, Ankit Rajpoot missed his lengths four times as Hardik Pandya plundered him for four sixes to have 27 runs. Jofra Archer gave away only three runs in the next over to give hope for the Royals to finish with a gettable total. Nevertheless, Pandya thwarted all the plans as he punished Kartik Tyagi for 27 more runs. It lifted the Mumbai Indians from 168 to 195.
“Hard work before this IPL has been fantastic from my side” : Hardik Pandya
The Baroda all-rounder underlined that he had been waiting for this kind of knock and was in the queue to get the required rhythm. Hardik Pandya revealed that he hit a few sixes off the bottom of the bat and it is his favourite one. Furthermore, the 26-year old felt confident in his power and did not try to overhit any of the delivery. Pandya highlighted that he relied on timing and struck the ball close to his body. Concerning the total of 195, the all-rounder stated that his team was not aiming for that total and feels it should be enough.
“Enjoyed it a lot. Was waiting for this. Was trying for it but it wasn’t coming. Hard work before this IPL has been fantastic from my side. So I was waiting for that one hit maybe to get the rhythm and get back to hitting sixes which I love. I hit few from the bottom of my bat. The bat which I play with is my favourite bat. I’ve been using it for three years. I love to look after my things. I thought that before this game I was trying to hit in front of my body. Today I was focusing on making sure I don’t overhit it because I think I have enough power to clear the boundary. So I was more trying to time the ball and making sure I hit close to my body because I feel that’s where I have more control. I don’t think we were aiming for that (195) but we keep doing it again and again. I think it should be enough,” Pandya told in the mid-innings presentation.