Hardik Pandya is known all over the world for his hard hitting and powerful strikes. He can change the situation of the match in a matter of just one over via his brilliant stroke play. Be it IPL or be it International cricket, bowlers fear bowling to him when he is in the mood or slog overs are going on.
In this section, we will take a look at a similiar innings by Pandya which changed the momentum of the match and took India to an absolutely commanding position from where they coudn’t have lost the match.
The Match –
This match was played in the season 2018. Ireland was hosting India for a series of two T-20 matches. This particular game was played in Dublin on 29 June-2018. In the first match, India had won and were leading 1-0 going into the second game.
Match Situation –
Ireland won the toss and elected to field first. The Indian openers were captain Virat Kohli and KL Rahul. Unfortunately, the openers could not provide a solid start as Kohli was dismissed in the third over itself. Kohli could make only 9 runs.
Number 3 batsman Suresh Raina and Rahul formed a nice partnership of 106 runs for the second wicket. Rahul was then dismissed at the score of 70 runs. Rohit Sharma, the next man in could not trouble the scorers as he was dismissed for a duck.
Manish Pandey batting at number 6 joined forces with Raina as the two stuck in. The duo added 41 runs before Raina was dismissed with 15 more balls remaining in India’s innings.
Hardik Pandya came to the pitch at the score of 169 and just 15 balls left. It appeared as if India would score somewhere around 190-195 at the end of 20 overs. Not Pandya, though.
Pandya’s first scoring shot was a single to long on. This was however just the solitary single he would take in the next 8 balls. Pandya went 6,6,2,6,6,4,1 of the remaining deliveries he faced.
First six of these was a swat flick off his pads as the ball disappeared over deep square leg. The bowler was Peter Chase.
The second six came of the next ball as a full ball was thumped over long on, disdainfully.
On the last ball of the over, Pandya took a double as he mistimed his hit to midwicket.
Pandya faced the third ball of the final over and immediately slapped the bowler over covers for a six via a one handed shot! Pandya’s hand came off the handle while attempting that shot, but such was the power that the ball still travelled over the ropes!
The next ball was into Pandya’s slot and he duly launched in straight over the bowler’s head for a massive six.
Fifth ball of the over was a shot delivery by Brian and still the batsman managed to hit through mid off for a flat boundary.
On the last ball, sanity prevailed as Pandya could hit the ball only towards long off for a single.
Hardik Pandya finished with 32 runs of just 9 deliveries. He hit 4 huge sixes and a boundary. The impact of this innings was that India finished with score of 213-4 when at one stage they could have finished with somewhere around 190-195.
No prizes for guessing that in reply to such a huge score, Ireland could not stand their ground as they were bundled out for just 70 runs. Not one of the batsman could take the pressure of such high required run rate.
Kuldeep Yadav was the pick of the bowler with 3 wickets while giving away just 16 runs as India strolled to victory by 143 runs and won the series 2-0.
You can watch Hardik’s innings in this video -: