With Team India looking to make a fresh start, after a demoralizing exit from the T20 World Cup 2022 where they were eliminated in the semis after a loss to England, all eyes will be on captain Hardik Pandya. India has rested regular skipper Rohit Sharma along with most of the players from the World Cup squad. Hardik, who has been touted to be the successor of Rohit in the format, has been handed the responsibility of leading the young India side in the three-match series against New Zealand.
Ahead of the start of the series, former India head coach Ravi Shastri revealed what would be the impact of having Hardik as the leader.
Speaking to the broadcasters before the commencing of the series opener in Sky Stadium, with has been delayed due to rain, Shastri suggest that when a player as impactful as Hardik, as was Kapil Dev, leads the side, other players in the team bound to get inspired and lift their game up as well.
Explaining the same, Ravi Shastri said, “He has got that flamboyance and that exuberance. So that will reflect on the players in the team. I remember when Kapil Dev was captain. When you have an impact player and when you have all-rounder when you have a player who is on the thick of action right through those 20 overs it makes a massive difference. It lifts the spirit of others and inspires others to emulate him. So I’m really looking forward to the way Hardik leads.”
Earlier on Thursday, VVS Laxman, the stand-in India coach, said the all-rounder is a ‘players’ captain’.
Before the opening T20I, VVS Laxman, said, “He is a fabulous leader. We have seen what he has done in IPL. I have spent time with him from Ireland. His presence and work ethic are exemplary. He is a players’ captain and is approachable. Players confide in him. He leads by example.”