The Indian team is currently taking on the Aussies. The team has had a few disappointments, but also allowed us to witness some exceptional performances. A good example would be Hardik Pandya, who has proved his worth during the series, especially after he produced another fine knock with the bat, scoring 42 not out off 22 balls on Sunday.
Pandya’s performance caught the eye of captain Virat Kohli. Post-match, Kohli said that Pandya should seriously consider taking the next step in his career and build towards establishing himself as a dependable player in India’s middle order in the time to come.
“The reason was Hardik coming into the team in 2016 was pure ability. He has raw talent. And now he realises that this is his time, the next 4-5 years, to be that finisher, that bankable player that can win you games from anywhere,” Kohli said during the post-match presentation ceremony after India’s six-wicket win at the SCG.
“His plans are right and I’m glad to see that. He plays with all his heart and he certainly got that competitive nature about him and also has the skill to execute that at the highest level.”
While Pandya is establishing himself as a reliable batsmen, T Natarajan has been showing off his bowling skills, by taking the place of experienced bowlers like Jasprit Bumrah and performing on their level.
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“We’ve played as a team in T20 cricket. The fact that we don’t have Rohit and Bumrah, our established white ball players, in and still doing well makes me happy,” Kohli explained.
He added, “Everyone has played 14 games at least, recently – so they know what their plans are. We just kept them down to a total which we thought was quite chaseable with the short boundary. It’s contributions from the whole team that make you feel better because young players are taking their opportunities.”