Hardik Pandya's indispensability highlighted, MI captain 'needed' for India to win T20 WC in eye-opener for booing fans | Crickit
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Hardik Pandya's indispensability highlighted, MI captain 'needed' for India to win T20 WC in eye-opener for booing fans

Apr 14, 2024 02:05 PM IST

Michael Vaughan lashed out at the Wankhede crowd for booing Hardik Pandya before making a brutal ‘T20 World Cup’ statement on the MI captain.

The spectators at the Wankhede will once again be in focus when Mumbai Indians play their third IPL 2024 match at home on the trot. There was a bit of respite for captain Hardik Pandya at one of the previous games, against Delhi Capitals, where he wasn't booed at all by the crowd, which mostly comprised children from various NGOs. Mumbai will be up against defending champions Chennai Super Kings on Sunday. However, ahead of the blockbuster match, labelled as ‘El Clasico’, former England captain Michael Vaughan lashed out at the Wankhede crowd before making a brutal ‘T20 World Cup’ statement on Hardik.

Mumbai Indians captain Hardik Pandya celebrates with fans after Mumbai won the Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket match against Delhi Capitals(PTI)
Mumbai Indians captain Hardik Pandya celebrates with fans after Mumbai won the Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket match against Delhi Capitals(PTI)

Speaking on The Ranveer Show on YouTube, Vaughan admitted that the behaviour from the Indian crowd towards Hardik baffled him. The MI skipper, in the first four matches in IPL 2024, was booed, jeered at and taunted with ‘Rohit Sharma’ chants throughout as fans voiced their disagreement with the franchise to shockingly remove Rohit as the skipper last December.

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Vaughan admitted that while he understood the hostility from the Ahmedabad crowd in MI's first game this season, given Hardik played for two seasons at Gujarat Titans, but was revealed that he was shocked at the treatment the all-rounder received in Hyderabad and at the Wankhede.

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“I don't understand booing. I kind of get it in the first game in Gujarat, because he played for them for two years and did not well as a captain. But then when he went to Hyderabad, I was like, 'What's going on.' Then when he came back to Wankhede, his own home support was booing him. I did not understand that," he said.

Vaughan then handed fans a brutal eye-opener saying that India need Hardik to win the T20 World Cup, which begins in June, and hence urged them to lift his spirit and confidence over the next few weeks of the competition. The statement further indicated that despite voices being concerned over Hardik's form by a few veteran cricketers, who in turn backed Shivam Dube for a spot in the World Cup squad, Vaughan threw his weight behind the MI skipper.

“What Indian cricket fans need to understand is that Mumbai Indians are Indian fans and for India to win the T20 World Cup, they need Hardik Pandya. They need him to play well. So somehow, over the next few weeks, they need him to get that confidence level right upto the top level, because with India having Hardik flying, they got a great chance in lifting that trophy,” he said.

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