He has a repertoire for killing the game by clearing the fence, especially in the T20 format. He has a reputation of doing it time and again for a better part of the last decade, especially in the Indian Premier League.
But on Tuesday night, Hardik Pandya failed to deliver on all the fronts, despite notching up the highest individual score of the night. His unbeaten knock of 59 off 53 balls resulted in Gujarat Titans falling five runs short of Delhi Capitals’ total of 130 for eight.
Hardik’s knock was eerily similar to the one played by Lucknow Super Giants’ captain K.L. Rahul against Gujarat Titans on a challenging Lucknow pitch not too long ago. No doubt unlike LSG, the Titans had lost early wickets but once Hardik managed to take the chase deep, the onus was on him to accelerate and finish the game off.
Hardik somehow just wasn’t able to play the big shots. It meant that his innings resulted in being a mountain without a peak. While Hardik was candid enough to own up to the loss, key Gujarat Titans batter Shubman Gill tried his best to bat for his captain.
“As a player and as a batsman, we are all bound to have one off day. It was just one of those off days. But he did back himself to get those runs but credit to Delhi, they bowled some really good yorkers at the back end,” Shubman said.
“In the low-scoring game, when there is too much pressure after a poor start, you try to take it deep and leave it to the last over. It was a tough wicket but not unplayable.”
With Titans scheduled to play two more games this week, the Titans will be looking forward to its captain to get back to his big-hitting ways soon.
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