Former India player turned veteran commentator Aakash Chopra said Hardik Pandya’s combination with Ashish Nehra could be one of the reasons why the Gujarat Titans captain seems to lead his franchise better than how he leads India. Hardik led the franchise to the Indian Premier League (IPL) title last year and the finals this season as well. He made a good start to his stint as India’s T20I captain but has drawn a lot of criticism for his captaincy in the recent series loss to the West Indies as well.
In a video shared on his YouTube channel, Chopra stated: “He could be the Indian team’s captain in the 2024 T20 World Cup. In captaincy, at the moment it seems like he is a work in progress. He has won the Gujarat Titans the title once and took them to the final once. He has captained in only two seasons and captained amazingly well in both years. When he captains that side, there is a clear pattern. It’s all almost predictable. You got surprised one or two times but other than that, you couldn’t have found a mistake in his captaincy. Maybe it was the combo pack of him and Ashish Nehra.”
Aakash Chopra feels Hardik Pandya might alternatively be more comfortable with the Gujarat Titans’ side. He shared that the franchise have match-winning bowlers and that he used them very well in familiar conditions as well.
“However, when he is captaining the Indian team, there is a lot of up and down. There is no template or pattern, which is alright as you can surprise the opposition team. It’s okay if your own team is getting benefitted because of that but what if your team’s players are unable to get prepared? Yuzi (Yuzvendra) Chahal becomes half the bowler while bowling in the powerplay. You don’t come to know whether Axar Patel is a bowler or batter, or what he is doing. Mukesh Kumar bowls only at the death. You bowl at times with the new ball and don’t do that on other occasions. It just leads to a bit more confusion is what I feel,” Aakash Chopra concluded.