'Rohit Sharma is different class. It's not Hardik Pandya's fault that MI made him captain…': Sourav Ganguly | Crickit
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'Rohit Sharma is different class. It's not Hardik Pandya's fault that MI made him captain…': Sourav Ganguly

Apr 06, 2024 07:34 PM IST

Sourav Ganguly said "it's not correct" for the fans to boo Hardik Pandya as it was not his fault that MI appointed him captain replacing Rohit Sharma.

Former India captain and the current Delhi Capitals director of cricket, Sourav Ganguly said urged the fans not to boo Mumbai Indians captain Hardik Pandya and accept the franchise's decision. Ganguly said "it's not correct" for the fans to boo Hardik as it was not his fault that MI appointed him captain and it is high time the fans accept this and move forward.

Mumbai Indians' captain Hardik Pandya and teammate Rohit Sharma in a conversation(ANI)
Mumbai Indians' captain Hardik Pandya and teammate Rohit Sharma in a conversation(ANI)

"I don't think they should boo Hardik Pandya. It's not correct. The franchise has appointed him as captain," Ganguly told reporters in Mumbai on the eve of the MI vs DC IPL 2024 match.

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MI has played three matches this season and Hardik was booed in each one of them. He wasn't even spared by the home crowd at the Wankhede Stadium, which has acted as the 12th mam for the franchise for many years.

Ganguly said it is never a player's fault when he is appointed as captain of the country, state or franchise. It's the selectors and the team management's decision. "This is what happens in sports whether you captain India or a state or a franchise you are appointed captain..."

Pandya started his IPL career with the Mumbai Indians under Rohit Sharma's captaincy in 2015 and then developed not only as one of the main players of the franchise but also for India's white-ball sides. He left MI and went to the newly-formed franchise Gujarat Titans and was appointed their captain.

He tasted success in his first attempt leading GT to the IPL title in 2022. Next year, he once again led from the front to take GT to the final where they lost to CSK.

Just when it was looking like he would lead GT to another fruitful season, Pandya pulled a rabbit out of the hat by moving back to MI in dramatic fashion just before the auction. He was also named captain of the franchise, replacing Rohit, the five-time IPL-winning captain.

Rohit Sharma has a different class: Sourav Ganguly

Ganguly said Rohit is of a different class both as captain and as player but fans now need to respect Hardik as MI's new captain. "Obviously Rohit Sharma has a different class. His performance as a captain and player for the franchise and for India has been on a different level. It's not Hardik's fault that he has been appointed as captain. All of us need to understand that," Ganguly said.

MI and DC are both languishing at the bottom half of the table. DC have lost three in four matches and are in 9th position while MI are yet to win a match this season. Ganguly said one can expect a good contest when these two sides meet at the Wankhede Stadium on Sunday.

"Mumbai is a good team. We expect them to play well. They have been quality side for many years. T20 is a format where you can lose 2-3 games on the bounce. This is their home, a great venue. It's gonna be a good game," Ganguly said.

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