hardik pandya irfan pathan

Former Indian cricketer Irfan Pathan criticized the selection and vice-captaincy of Hardik Pandya for the T20 World Cup, questioning the BCCI’s apparent double standard.

Former Indian all-rounder Irfan Pathan has reignited the debate surrounding Hardik Pandya’s inclusion in the T20 World Cup squad. Despite facing criticism for his poor form in IPL 2024, Pandya was not only selected for the showpiece event but also named the team’s vice-captain, a decision that has left Pathan puzzled.

Pathan criticized the BCCI’s apparent double standard when it comes to player selection. He highlighted instances where players like Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan were dropped from the national team until they regained form in domestic cricket. However, this same yardstick was not applied to Pandya, who also sat out domestic matches before returning to the Indian squad.

“Previously, Hardik Pandya held the captaincy, but Rohit Sharma took over for T20 matches. There was a plan for a younger team with Pandya and Surya as potential captains. Yet, questions arise regarding Pandya’s performance consistency and commitment to Indian cricket,” Pathan said on Star Sports as quoted by NDTV.

Pathan emphasized the importance of consistent domestic participation for players representing India throughout the year. He acknowledged that injuries are unavoidable, but a proper return plan should involve playing domestic matches to regain form.

“Regular participation in domestic cricket is essential. But then there’s this one player who returns from injury without fulfilling the same requirements. That shouldn’t happen because it sends the wrong message to the rest of the team,” stressed Pathan.

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Pathan believes such preferential treatment disrupts team harmony. “Cricket isn’t like tennis; it’s a team sport where equality is vital. Every player should be treated fairly and equally,” he stated. He further argued that past instances of giving certain players “undue advantage” are unacceptable in a team sport like cricket.

Pathan also questioned the BCCI’s choice of vice-captain, suggesting Jasprit Bumrah might have been a better fit. “Considering current performance, the selectors opting for continuity may be understandable. Yet, I believe someone like Bumrah wouldn’t have been a bad choice either,” conceded the ex-cricketer.



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Last Updated on May 2, 2024