Hardik Pandya Is Potentially The Next Kapil Dev, Believes Ian Chappell.
Hardik Pandya is perhaps the most talked about young cricketer in India at the moment. The reason is simple – his uniqueness. The Baroda born all-rounder is the rare mix of a lively seam bowler packaged in an attacking batsman’s avatar.
India has been in search of such a talent for a long time or instead say since the retirement of Kapil Dev in 1992. Kapil – The Haryana Hurricane, was the best and also, unfortunately, the last world-class seam bowling all-rounder India had in its ranks. Since then the Indian team has been in a lookout mode only.
A bunch of names emerged, but none of them could fill the huge void left by the Kapil Dev.
A couple of promising names that emerged in the recent decades is of Irfan Pathan and Stuart Binny. But, they could only show some spark and were not long-term options.
But, fortunately, after a long wait, Hardik Pandya has come to the fore and promises a lot of exciting things.
Some of his recent antics on the field has grabbed every possible eyeball including cricketing legends like Ian Chappell who backs the assumption of Pandya becoming the next Kapil Dev.
“Hardik Pandya is potentially the pace bowling all-rounder India has craved since Kapil Dev retired, Chappell wrote in his piece for Hindustan Times.
“His biggest influence on the team could come in the Test arena. A player like Pandya, who has the ability to bat in the top six and also bowl at 140 kph gives a Test side the flexibility that leads to success in all conditions. It affords India the opportunity to field a balanced attack of five bowlers no matter what the conditions.
Chappell also felt that Pandya can contribute significantly to India’s future success if he lives up to his promise.
“All-rounders with those attributes have the ability to change the course of a game quickly and in doing so, inspire their teammates.”
“For India to be regarded as a truly great side they need to perform well in tough conditions and against extremely competitive opponents like Australia and South Africa. If Pandya can adapt his bowling to succeed in those cauldrons – and there’s no reason he can’t – then India, with a strong batting line-up, is more likely to experience consistent overseas success.”
Pandya has the example of Ben Stokes to follow, Chappell feels. He concedes that Pandya can truly emulate Stokes’ accomplishments in all three formats due to the similar style of play.
Stokes, at the moment, is England cricket’s MVP and emerged on the Test scene in 2013.
“With his flamboyant style, Pandya reminds me a little of the electrifying England all-rounder Ben Stokes; the outstanding and highly combative cricketer on the field rather than the citizen with a propensity for self-destruction off it.”
“Both players are aggressive in their approach and this often results in a match-changing performance or a deflating and spectacular misfire. Neither is concerned with containment and this can lead to the odd profligate spell of bowling.”
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