“The Syria tours were out of this world” Hardik Pandya



Mount Maunganui: India’s captain Hardik Pandya is aware that the batsmen will not succeed every time they are given the ball to do the job, but he wants to see more all-round batsmen in his team for better bowling options.

After Suryakumar Yadav hit an unbeaten 51-ball 111, Deepak Hooda used his breaks to dismiss four bowlers, contributing to the team’s all-around 65-run victory over New Zealand in the second T20I.

Hooda is an effective mixture in the lower middle order as well.

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“It couldn’t get any better than this. Everyone chipped it in but it was definitely a special run by Syria. We were going to score 170-175,” Pandya said during the post-match presentation.

“The pitchers did a good job and it was about being aggressive in the mentality. It’s not about taking every little ball, but being aggressive with the ball is important.

“The conditions were very wet so credit goes to the bowlers. I’ve been bowling a lot, and I want to see more bowling options. It’s not always that this will work but I want more strokes to engage with the ball.”

Ex-players like Anil Kumble and Michael Vaughan have pointed out India’s lack of bowling options after their T20 exit Globalism Trophy, throwing the ball for more all-round hitting.

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Pandya, who is leading the team in Rohit Sharma’s absence, said his job as captain is to provide the right environment for the team in the dressing room.

“I expect them to be professionals, and they are. Give them the opportunity to enjoy themselves. It’s about creating an environment where everyone is in a happy place,” said the 29-year-old.

“I see so many times in this team that all the players are happy with each other’s success. That’s important.” New Zealand captain Kane Williamson admitted it was “not our best effort” and said Suryakumar’s whirlwind made the difference.

“Syria’s roles were out of this world. One of the best takes I’ve ever seen. Some of that footage, I’ve never seen before. It was amazing,” he said.

“We didn’t even mark. We didn’t get momentum with the ball, we didn’t get enough wickets and we didn’t get momentum with the bat either. It was frustrating.”

“…his innings were the difference. He swung a bit (in the chase) and India did well at getting some swing,” said Williamson.

“It’s important to look at those few areas and improve. We need to look at the small margins. Sometimes special innings can happen, Suriya is the best player in the world,” said Suriyakumar, who was adjudged man of the match for his sensational injury He had a clear plan when he went out to bat.

The plan was clear when I got to work. On the 12th/13th we thought about hitting deep and getting about a 170-175 par.”

“The secret (behind his quirky shots) is about intention and you need to enjoy yourself. It’s also about the work you put in in training sessions.

“It feels great to come here, and to play a full game and go 1-0 in this series feels good. I feel like I didn’t think a lot about what was going on. I just got my game plan right and it worked really well. Great crowd here.” India will play New Zealand in the third and final T20 on Tuesday.


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