‘Great to see him exhibiting qualities of a leader’: VVS Laxman heaps praise on Hardik Pandya
Hardik Pandya has been India’s star performer both on and off the field in Australia. The all-rounder who played as a batsman in the limited-overs series against Australia not only emerged as one of the bankable batsmen in the middle-order but also showed signs of a matured teamman by handing over his T20 Man of the Series to newcomer T Natarajan.
Reacting on the same, former Indian batsman VVS Laxman said it was an ‘excellent’ gesture by Pandya and added that there is no doubt Natarajan will continue to work hard in the future.
“Excellent gesture from @hardikpandya7 Great to see him exhibiting qualities of a leader. Also feel very happy for @Natarajan_91. I have no doubt Nattu will continue to work hard and show improvement and progress in his craft. Good luck,” Laxman tweeted.
Natarajan made his ODI and T20I debut in this Australia tour and impressed one and all with his ability to adapt to different situations. Natarajan emerged as captain Virat Kohli’s go-to man in the absence of experienced seamers Jaspirt Bumrah and Mohammed Shami.
“I want people to believe in themselves and to achieve anything even if odds are against them. It’s just my way of appreciating his hard work over the years. For me, Natrajan deserves the Man of the Series award. To perform so brilliantly on his debut speaks volumes of his belief and the talent he possesses,” Pandya said.
While Natarajan picked just two wickets in the ODIs, he finished with six wickets in the three-match T20I series - the most. In fact, it was the manner in which he kept bowling the yorkers that impressed one and all with the pacer being compared to someone like Zaheer Khan.
Pandya had earlier spoken about how the pacer deserved the Man of the Match award after the second T20I as well.
“I thought Natarajan would have been Man of the Match. The other bowlers struggled and he really had a good game, he gave us a target about 10 runs lower than it would have been,” he had said.
Skipper Virat Kohli had said that the pacer can be an asset for the team. In fact, Kohli is known to be fond of left-arm pacers due to the angle they create.
“Natarajan special mention for him as in absence of Bumrah and Shami. He is been the guy who has stood up and really delivered under pressure. And it’s an outstanding fact that he playing his first game at the international level,” Kohli had said during a virtual press conference on Tuesday
“He looks very composed and is a very hard-working guy and very humble too. I wish him all the best and a left-arm bowler is always an asset on the field and if he can be consistent it will be a great thing for us heading into the world cup next year,” he had added.
(With ANI inputs)