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Hardik Pandya is in David Warner mould, says Sunil Gavaskar

Hardik Pandya was quite impressive in his debut Test series against Sri Lanka as he scored 178 runs in two matches and Sunil Gavaskar believes that he can emulate David Warner’s success.

india vs sri lanka 2017 Updated: Aug 14, 2017 23:27 IST
HT Correspondent
India vs Sri Lanka,Hardik Pandya,David Warner
Hardik Pandya holds the Man of The Match prize after victory in the third day of the third Test match between Sri Lanka and India.(AFP)

Sunil Gavaskar believes that all-rounder Hardik Pandya can follow in the footsteps of David Warner when it comes to transforming himself from a Twenty20 specialist to a man for all formats. (HIGHLIGHTS)

“It’s still early days but Pandya has proven that he has it in himself to succeed in Test cricket. He is a bit like David Warner. I believe that Hardik will follow Warner’s footsteps and become a successful player in all three formats of the game,” former India captain Gavaskar told NDTV. (SCORECARD)

Hardik Pandya was quite impressive in his debut Test series against Sri Lanka as he scored 178 runs in two matches which included a century and a fifty. The 23-year-old slammed his maiden century in the Pallekele Test, where he was named Man-of-the-Match, to guide his team to a historic series win over the hosts. (VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS)

Gavaskar was also quite impressed with the way India clinched the Test series, saying the ruthless nature of the side was testament to skipper Virat Kohli’s determination.

READ | Hardik Pandya’s emergence ‘biggest positive’ for India in Sri Lanka: Virat Kohli

“The most impressive aspect of this team was that they never took their foot off the pedal and the team wanted to win by the biggest margin possible. They enforced the follow-on in the last two Tests to win the games by huge margins and that tells you how ruthless they have become,” said former India opener.

“It was a tribute to the spirit of the Indian team and the determination that Virat Kohli has brought to the team. Some people will say that the Sri Lanka team was not strong enough but it does not diminish the credibility of this Indian team.”

The Indian cricket team was dominant throughout the three-Test series to clinch their first ever away series whitewash.

READ | Hardik Pandya glad to score maiden century in debut series against Sri Lanka

Along with Hardik Pandya, the other big performer for India in this series was opener Shikhar Dhawan, who was named Man-of-the-Series for being the highest run-getter with 358.

Gavaskar feels that India’s first-choice opening batsman Murali Vijay will now find it difficult to earn back his spot in the team.

“The fact that Murali Vijay will be back soon will keep Shikhar Dhawan on his toes and considering how Dhawan has performed in this season, Murali Vijay may have to wait for his turn,” said Gavaskar.

India and Sri Lanka will now face each other in a five-match One-Day International (ODI) series with the first game taking place in Dambulla on August 20.

READ | India dismiss Sri Lanka to complete 3-0 rout, script historic cricket series win

Considering the current form, India will surely be the favourites but it is worth remembering that the hosts defeated Virat Kohli’s team in the ICC Champions Trophy in June. When asked about the possible result of the series, Gavaskar predicted an India victory but was quick to add that it will not be an easy task.

“India should win the series, but it will not be this easy. We have to remember that Sri Lanka defeated them in the ICC Champions Trophy and they will have to watch out for the hosts,” concluded Gavaskar.

First Published: Aug 14, 2017 20:47 IST