India cricketer Hardik Pandya is regarded as one of the best all-rounders in the cricketing world. He provides the team with the right balance as he is probably the only player to can take a five-wicket haul and also score a quick-fire fifty at a strike rate of above 150. In the recently concluded ODI series, he was named the Man of the Series for his heroics with the bat as well as with the ball. However, for an all-rounder playing three formats in international cricket is very tough. Recently, England all-rounder Ben Stokes announced retirement from ODI cricket to focus on T20 and Test. This can happen with Hardik Pandya as well. Former India head coach Ravi Shastri recently opened up about Pandya’s career in ODIs where he said that the India all-rounder could retire from 50 overs cricket after ICC World Cup 2023.
Through the ups and downs, with my people by my side. Woke up every morning raring to go, with the will to become stronger, with the will to become fitter and play for my country. Always grateful to those who stood by me, who encouraged me, who guided me pic.twitter.com/4gi32ijq1k
— hardik pandya (@hardikpandya7) July 18, 2022
“50-over format might be pushed back but it can still survive if you focus just on the World Cup. From the ICC’s point of view, paramount importance should be given to World Cups, whether it is T20 World Cup or 50-over World Cup, the bucks have to increase. Test cricket will always remain because of the importance it brings to the game. You have players already choosing what formats they want to play. Take a Hardik Pandya. He wants to play T20 cricket and he is very clear in his mind that ‘I do not want to play anything else,” said Shastri on Sky Sports.
“He will play the 50-over cricket because there is a World Cup in India next year. After that, you might see him going from that as well. You will see a similar thing happening with other players, they will start choosing formats, they have every right to,” the ex-Indian head coach added.
Hardik made his ODI debut way back in 2016. So far he has played just two fifty overs ICC events – ICC 2017 Champions Trophy and ICC 2019 World Cup. Hardik has scored 1,386 runs in 66 ODIs at an average of 33.80 and strike rate of 115.
Ben Stokes’ retirement took the cricketing world by shook. Many cricket experts have expressed their opinion on it. Some former cricketers have expressed that ODIs should be scrapped as it is unnecessary putting people under a lot of workload. It will be interesting to see how ICC take the game of cricket forward.