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India vs England: Remove all-rounder tag from Hardik Pandya – Harbhajan Singh

Harbhajan Singh compared Hardik Pandya’s performances to that of England all-rounders like Ben Stokes and Chris Woakes to show that the youngster was found lacking on several occasions.

cricket Updated: Aug 15, 2018 17:13 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
India vs England,Hardik Pandya,Harbhajan Singh
Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli, left, speaks with Hardik Pandya during the fourth day of the first Test against England.(AP)

Harbhajan Singh has been extremely critical of the Indian cricket team following their consecutive losses to England in the ongoing Test series and this time, his target was Hardik Pandya. The off-spinner said that the ‘all-rounder’ tag should be removed from the youngster and it is unfair to think that he will turn into a talent like Kapil Dev overnight.

“He (Hardik Pandya) hasn’t got many runs as a batsman and the captain doesn’t seem to have confidence in his bowling. If he doesn’t bowl in these conditions then things will only get difficult for him and the Indian team in the future,” Harbhajan told AajTak.

READ: It’s too early to talk about 5-0 win over India, says England keeper Jonny Bairstow

The off-spinner compared Pandya’s performances to that of England all-rounders like Ben Stokes and Chris Woakes to show that the youngster was found lacking on several occasions.

“We have to remove the all-rounder tag from him as an all-rounder contributes in both the departments as Stokes, Curran did in the first Test and now Woakes has done at the Lord’s. The same is expected of Hardik Pandya, he cannot become Kapil Dev overnight!,” the spinner added.

India were defeated in the first Test at Edgbaston by 31 runs and at Lord’s, they were completely outplayed as the hosts won the encounter by an innings and 159 runs.

READ: India blessed to have Bumrah who can swing at great pace, says Mitchell McClenaghan

“As a bowling unit, we tried but all of a sudden the ball stopped swinging and they - (Chris) Woakes and (Jonny) Bairstow - took the game away,” Pandya had said after the match.

“It happens - I’ve seen in Tests. You get four or five wickets quickly and then you get one partnership. Even with our batting line-up, it has happened many times. It’s just a part of the game,” Pandya said.

First Published: Aug 15, 2018 17:13 IST