Hardik Pandya – The New T20 India Captain

Hardik Pandya – The New T20 India Captain

Hardik Pandya – The New T20 India Captain

Hardik Pandya – The New T20 India Captain

The reward for being indispensable- A Good Move or A Mistake 


Call me old school, but there is nothing special about Hardik Pandya the captain. While BCCI is testing the reins of Captaincy with Hardik as a potential replacement for Rohit in the T20 Format for the T20 Worldcup 2024, I agree with Gautam Gambhir that India should be ready with an ideal replacement for Hardik too. While Gambhir mentioned this purely on the fragile Hardik regarding constant injuries, there was a lot of criticism for this statement from the public. From the perspective of the former India World Cup star, Hardik is prone to injuries and does not have the strength to even bowl his full quota of 4 overs in a T20 match. His laborious run while fielding is for everyone to see. In addition to Gautam’s views, I believe Hardik is yet to prove his captaincy skills. His winning the IPL on his debut captaincy role cannot be the only criterion to make him the captain of a 1.3 billion cricket crazy nation 

His batting is the better suit in his armoury and he is India’s best All-rounder by a distance 

In the last season’s IPL, as captain for the Gujarat Titans, Hardik acted like a stage performer with the excess animated expressions, and hamming required like in a live act. This might have helped them to win the title. Gujarat Titans’ key performances came from Killer Miller, Rashid Khan and Hardik Pandya who played together for the first time but still managed to gel well as a unit. Gujarat won its maiden title on debut and suddenly India found its captain in waiting in the shorter format

My initial view at Hardik Pandya as the new India captain is unfortunately not an enjoyable read for all the Hardik Fans. I too am a Hardik fan and truly believe India does not have another player even 70% close to his all-round game. But does Hardik’s indispensability make him India’s right choice for captaincy?

Rohit due to his unfortunate finger injury and KL Rahul’s unavailability gave an opportunity for BCCI to give the captaincy to Hardik Pandya for the Sri Lanka T20 Series. 

Hardik Pandya is a whole hearted Cricketer, but is he a leader amongst his men. 

Rohit Sharma playing 2024 T20 Worldcup is highly unlikely and India needs to prepare for an ideal successor but they cannot put all their eggs in one basket

The over-the-top behaviour and a definite behavioural change with the cameras around show a man desperately wanting to show an intelligent and aggressive demeanour

Hardik was in the storm of criticism in the last IPL edition when he lashed out at Mohd. Shami and David Miller. 

Ex- Indian wicket-keeper Saba Karim also shared a similar thought on the new India T20 captain. He urged Pandya to have a reality check on his attitude when he is leading an international side 

I think he needs to focus on his attitude. Everyone likes him as a player because of his attitude. As a captain, if you show a lot of emotions on the field, players will get fearful. I don’t think that’s the right thing for a team to grow. You have to trust your players,” Saba Karim said while speaking in a debate on India News.

In the first T20 against Sri Lanka, Hardik Pandya had an excellent day as a bowler. The Wankhede pitch always helps the seamers and the ball swings. Speed gun also cloaking at 140-145 range. Hardik had an excellent 3 over spell in the powerplay and I don’t know if the camera caught it, but for a brief movement clutched his back. The 29-year-old all Rounders is not the fittest player currently and there was a lot of huffing and puffing after each over he bowled. 

At the start of their innings, the Indian Batsmen were poor in their execution and put in a very chase-able score for the visitors. Hardik also had a poor run with the bat and he actually put India in a difficult situation when he got out at the worst possible time after being set.

In the game, field placements were good but had questionable bowling changes. While Shivam Mavi, Umran Malik, and Axar Patel along with Hardik had an excellent day with the ball, Yuzi Chahal and Harshal Patel, in particular, were taken to the cleaners by the Sri Lankan batsmen.

Hardik came back on the field after he went briefly into the dugout as he was cramping. 

With 6 bowlers and Hooda on standby, there was no pacer to bowl the last over except for Hardik Pandya. Instead of him bowling the most crucial over, Hardik took the call of bowling Axar Patel. In the post-match he defended his decision by saying he wanted the team to prepare for such a difficult situation in tougher circumstances. The fact that he did not mention that he was incapacitated due to cramps showed that he was fit to bowl but chose not to.

 I found the press conference of Hardik full of “I me myself” stamped on it. I wanted to do this, I wanted to do that …etc.

Who gives a spinner the last over to defend 12-odd runs? Is it good captaincy?? Especially when you know that spinners had an off day with Yuzi going for plenty in his last over.

It was clear that Hardik did not want to be the fall guy, so he put Axar in the front.

If India had lost, Hardik would have had the excuse to use cramp for him not bowling and now that India won, he could change his narrative.

What you see is not what you get with Hardik unlike with a Virat or Rohit

There was a lot of grinning and smiling when he gave the ball to Axar for the last over and this showed that Hardik had resigned to any outcome.

His demeanour suddenly changed when a six was hit. Suddenly, there were angry stares and shouting that followed. 

Luckily for India, Axar bowled a brave over and because Chamika Karunaratne had to farm the strike, he let go of the singles and fell short at the end.

India won the match but actually, it was Sri Lanka who had lost the match benefiting India with the win.

Fielding in the first T20 was very ordinary and with every mis-field, the captain lost his cool on the field in many occasions as things got tensed 

hardik pandya

Hardik Pandya’s leadership skills need to be put under scrutiny as he is given the role on the basis of his IPL Title win. He is a class player but rewarding him for that cannot be a criterion. Does he really possess leadership skills? only time will tell. 

The second T20 also had some glaring captaincy flaws.

The Pune stadium has never been a chasing ground and the team batting first has been on the winning side on most occasions.  Why did Hardik opt to chase after winning the toss?

Pune is a traditionally low-scoring ground.

Something was amiss during the entire game. It was like India wanted to lose the match. Started with bowling first, 7 no balls and 7 free hits which were unheard of. 200 Plus score in Pune, Hardik failing again in batting. Something didn’t feel right.

The game was all over after the Sky- Axar partnership was broken with Surya Kumar’s wicket and it was thanks to some late hitting from Shivam Mavi and Axar Patel that kept the spectators hoping for a miraculous turnaround in the game which was skewed in favour of the visitor.

I know the sample is small and my reading of him is on his Single season of IPL as captain of Gujarat Titans and his initial days as India captain for T20s. Hope my views change as he grows into the role.

On an oxymoronically level, I believe we will see the best of Hardik when he is the captain as he plays more responsibly, but will that help Team India.

Hardik Pandya Captaincy Records in T20I, ODI, and Test

Hardik Pandya got his opportunity to captain a new Team in IPL when a major reshuffle was done in the IPL team structure to accommodate 2 new teams , Gujarat Titans and Lucknow Super Giants. Mumbai Indians had to let him go and Gujarat Titans made him the captain. This proved to be successful for the franchise as Gujarat Titans won the title on debut.

Hardik as a captain in IPL has 487 runs with a strike rate of 131. In the winning edition under Hardik’s Captaincy Gujarat Titans won 11 out 15 matches played 

Hardik Pandya International Captaincy Record                                                  

Team India has played four T20I series under his leadership against Ireland, West Indies, Sri Lanka, and New Zealand and won all four. Out of 8 games captained Hardik has won 6 

Hardik Pandya’s Captaincy Record in the Test and ODI                                     

Hardik pandya did not get the chance to lead the Indian team in test matches. India Still has many options in ODI and Test, this may be the reason Pandya is still in queue. Moreover, Hardik pandya is known as a t20 specialist, which makes it easy for him in the T20 format.

Will Hardik replace Rohit as a captain in future?     

Once Rohit steps down he will be a contender in ODI Hardik currently is not playing any tests due to his fragile fitness.

Hardik is an invaluable player for India in T20I for India. He will be the natural successor as a captain after Rohit. Currently he only filled in as captain due to Rohit’s injury but BCCI will have Hardik on the top of list 

Rohit has been very successful in the ODI and Test formats, and will remain captain till the 2023 world cup. 

I cannot see Rohit or Virat play the 2024 T20 world cup considering their age. So, in most likelihood Hardik Pandya will be the first-choice captain for BCCI.

Hardik is a natural selection if he bowls in ODIs, else he will be second best to SuryaKumar Yadav as a pure batsman. Hardik may not pursue a Test career to have an extended limited overs career.


How many T20I series has India won under Hardik Pandya’s Captaincy?

Indian Team, 6 Matches won under Hardik Pandya’s captaincy.

Who is the First Captain of the T20I?

Virendra Sehwag was the first T20I Captain of India against South Africa

Who is the new captain of Indian cricket team in 2022/23?

Rohit Sharma is the all-format captain of India. In his absence Hardik Captained in the T20I

What is the Ranking of Hardik Pandya in the ODI?

Currently, Hardik is No 76 in the ODI Rankings 

Who is the no.1 captain in Indian cricket team?

Virat Kohli is the no.1 captain in Indian Cricket team

Who is the god of captain in cricket?

MS Dhoni and Ricky Ponting 

Who is no 1 captain in cricket?

MS Dhoni (332)


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