IPL 2021: 'Harsh call': SRH captain David Warner admits dropping seasoned campaigner Manish Pandey was a tough decision
- Manish Pandey, who has been a part of the IPL since 2008, having played 149 matches and scoring 3369 runs, has been warming the bench off late for the 2016 champions.
It's not often that an Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise drops a seasoned campaigner for reasons except for injuries or inadequate match fitness, especially if that player has been a regular member of his team from season 1. When it happens, however, even the skipper can be taken aback. In IPL 2021, it is happening to Manish Pandey and Sunrisers Hyderabad skipper David Warner. (Full IPL 2021 Coverage)
Pandey, who has been a part of the IPL since 2008, having played 149 matches and scoring 3369 runs, has been warming the bench off late for the 2016 champions.
The right-hander, who has been an essential member of the SRH side, was dropped after the third. Till that point, he'd scored 101 runs in 3 games, including a 61 not-out. So, what could be the reason behind his exclusion? Warner explains:
"Jonny [Bairstow] at the top of the order and Kane [Williamson] taking it deep, we couldn't bat well in the middle overs. It depends on the selectors, it was a harsh call as per my opinion (On leaving out Manish Pandey). But at the end of the day it is a decision that they took and you cannot discredit Virat, he's a very good player and the surface was difficult. They bowled well in the middle and made it challenging for us," said Warner.
The Australian opener admitted that leaving out Pandey, who has been their fixed No.4 for a long time, was a harsh call. He has been replaced by youngster Virat Singh, who scored 4 off 14 balls in Sunday's thriller against Delhi Capitals and did not get a chance to bat against Punjab Kings.
SRH next take on Chennai Super Kings at the Arun Jaitely Stadium in New Delhi on April 28. After losing to DC, they are placed seventh with one win in five games and continue to reel in the bottom half of the table.