Former India opener Virender Sehwag heaped huge praise on Hardik Pandya and put his weight behind the all-rounder’s inclusion in playing XI against Pakistan. Team India will re-ignite their rivalry with Pakistan on Sunday in the T20 World Cup clash. The Men in Blue is facing a problem of plenty in their camp with the squad full of quality players who performed exceedingly well in the warm-up clashes. Meanwhile, there are still a lot of uncertainties over Hardik’s inclusion in the final XI due to his bowling fitness.
Sehwag, who was one of the most destructive players of his era, backed Hardik to get a place in the XI as a pure batter for his ability to win the match on his own.
“He’ll be on my team. The kind of batter he is, if he clicks, he’ll make the match one-sided, and finish it. He has the ability, which he has shown many times. Yes, if he was bowling fit, that would have been the icing on the cake,” Sehwag told Cricbuzz.
The veteran opener further said that the Indian team should go with the five frontline bowlers and if anyone from the top-order can sneak in with a couple of overs in the middle it will be perfect for the balance.
“You should go with five bowlers plus if Hardik Pandya or someone else from the top-order bowls a few overs, it’ll be the perfect team for me," he added.
Hardik hasn’t bowled a single over in the IPL 2021 and T20 WC warm-up clashes which might put his position in the final under jeopardy. However, Sehwag said that the flamboyant all-rounder will be his first pick if he is batting well in the nets.
“His batting is surely a concern. If he’s not in form or not batting well in the nets, then you can maybe see another batter, otherwise, he’ll be my first pick,” he stated.
The high-octane clash will commence India and Pakistan’s campaign in 2021 T20 WC and both will look to start it on a high to set the tone for the rest of the tournament. Interestingly, Team India has maintained an unbeaten 5 match streak over Pakistan in T20 WC matches and they will only look to extend it on Sunday.