Legendary Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar reckons that Indian skipper Virat Kohli could’ve shared the Man of the Match award with the all-rounder Hardik Pandya in India’s 203-run victory over England in the third Test of the 5-match series at Trent Bridge.
India outplayed the hosts by a convincing margin after making a strong comeback in the series after a deflating loss at Lord’s in the previous game. Kohli went on to score 200 runs in the game as he scored 97 and 103 in the first and second innings of the Test respectively and he was received Man of the Match for his efforts as well.
However, Tendulkar, in reply to a question received during his live interaction on the 100MB app, on whether Hardik Pandya should have been given the award instead, he insisted, “I would have made them share the award. Both players played important roles in India’s victory. Both of Virat Kohli’s innings was very significant. The first innings helped give India a strong foundation and the century in the second innings ensured that India set an improbable target. At the same time, I feel that Hardik also played an important role, especially in the first innings.”
Hardik registered his first ever 5-wicket haul in his international career, which included the crucial scalps of England captain Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow. The all-rounder’s contribution resulted in the home side getting bowled out for 161 in the first innings.
Talking about his performance, Sachin said, “His five wickets were critical. Players like Joe Root, Jonny Bairstow is an in-form batsman, and to dismiss them early was vital. He even scored a quick-fire fifty in the second innings to take the target beyond 500. Eventually, it comes down to a matter of opinion.”
India would now look to square the series in the fourth match at Southampton that begins on August 30.