Rohit Sharma Provides Update on Hardik Pandya’s World Cup Return
Hardik Pandya, renowned for his invaluable contributions as a fast-bowling all-rounder, has been a key asset to the Indian cricket team. His ability to maintain the balance between batting and bowling has made him an indispensable player in the squad. However, the injury he sustained during the Cricket World Cup 2023 temporarily pushed him to the sidelines.
Pandya injured his left ankle while fielding in the match against Bangladesh on October 19. This setback caused him to miss subsequent games against New Zealand and England. The Indian cricket team captain, Rohit Sharma, recently shared updates on Hardik Pandya’s recovery during a pre-match press conference in Mumbai ahead of their game against Sri Lanka.
Rohit Sharma expressed that although Pandya would not be available for the upcoming match, there was positive news regarding his recovery. He stated, “It’s a very positive development. I can’t call it rehab, but whatever procedure he and the NCA had to undertake, they have received positive results.” Rohit Sharma emphasized that they needed to monitor Pandya’s progress continuously due to the nature of his injury and the demanding schedule of the World Cup, with matches occurring every three to four days.
He added, “Maybe, with the good progress he is making, we will get to see him soon.”
According to a report from the news agency PTI, it is unlikely that Hardik Pandya will return to action before India’s World Cup match against the Netherlands on November 12. The Indian team’s final league match is scheduled to take place in Bengaluru on that date. A BCCI source mentioned that Pandya is dealing with a minor tear but is recovering well. There is also a possibility that he might return directly for the semifinals.
With a flawless record of six wins in as many games, India is on course to qualify for the semifinals. However, the absence of Hardik Pandya has forced the team management to make adjustments. The team is currently playing with five bowlers, and Suryakumar Yadav is batting at the number six position to fill the void left by Pandya’s all-round abilities.
The medical team is closely monitoring Pandya’s recovery process and remains in contact with him and the National Cricket Academy (NCA). Updates on his condition are expected in the coming days.
As per a BCCI media release, Pandya was initially scheduled to join the team before their game against England but was not present with the squad.
Hardik Pandya is unlikely to participate in India’s next match against South Africa in Kolkata on November 5, but he is expected to return before the crucial clash with the Netherlands in Bengaluru on November 11, as reported by PTI.
In the initial three matches of the World Cup, Hardik Pandya played a pivotal role, contributing significantly to India’s victories, including their impressive win against Pakistan in Ahmedabad. His presence allowed the team management to have the flexibility to include an additional batter or bowler based on the situation.
As India currently leads the points table with six wins from as many matches, they are on the verge of securing a spot in the semi-finals. A victory against Sri Lanka on 2nd Nov would confirm their place in the next stage of the competition.