Hardik Pandya had a reasonable campaign in the 2019 edition of the World Cup in England and Wales. The all-rounder scored 226 runs in nine matches at an average of 32.28 with a top score of 48 against Australia at the Kennington Oval in London. He got those runs at a strike-rate of 112.43, which showed that he didn’t lack fluency in his batting by any stretch of the imagination.
With his medium-pace attack, Pandya picked up 10 wickets in the World Cup with best figures of 3/60 coming against Bangladesh. The Gujarat-born cricketer had a massive responsibility in the semi-final against New Zealand at the Old Trafford in Manchester. After the Black Caps put 239 on the board, India lost their top three – Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli and KL Rahul- in quick succession.
Pandya’s knock kept final hopes alive
Even Dinesh Karthik got out inside the single digits and Pandya came to bat after the fall of the fourth wicket. He stitched together a priceless stand of 47 with Rishabh Pant, who got out after scoring 32. Pandya tried to put his head and curbed his natural instincts. However, the required rate kept mounting at an alarming rate and the extreme pressure eventually got to the 25-year-old.
Even as the fast bowlers were tough to get away, Pandya tried to take on left-arm spinner Mitchell Santner, who got rid of Pant earlier. Hardik’s move faltered as he skied one off Santner into the safe hands of opposition skipper Kane Williamson. Pandya could manage only 32 off 62 with two fours. India eventually went on to lose the game by 18 runs and crashed out of the mega event.
Meanwhile, Pandya accepted the fact that the Men in Blue didn’t end the tournament the way they wanted. However, he was grateful for the fact that the mega event gave him a lot of learnings. He also expressed gratitude towards the team as well as the supporters.
He took to Twitter and wrote, “Memories.. memories to last a lifetime. My first World Cup didn’t have the ending we wanted but it’s given me so many emotions and lessons that I’ll always keep with me. Thank you to every one part of this special team including you the fans, we’re nothing without you,”
Here is Pandya’s tweet
Memories.. memories to last a lifetime. My first World Cup didn't have the ending we wanted but it's given me so many emotions and lessons that I'll always keep with me. Thank you to everyone part of this special team including you the fans, we're nothing without you 🇮🇳❤ pic.twitter.com/ZfECdrL2Rt
— hardik pandya (@hardikpandya7) July 11, 2019
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