"He captained the team like MS Dhoni" - Sanjay Manjrekar sees a resemblance of MS Dhoni's leadership in Hardik Pandya
Not many gave chances to Gujarat Titans ahead the start TATA IPL 2022. A team with not many big names, playing in their debut season, has certainly given their best and proved everyone wrong. Thus, they have won the IPL championship and become only the second team to win it in its debut season.
Hardik Pandya was certainly the anchor of the win, who led his team with complete authority and with some brilliant individual performances as well. Many cricketers and ex-cricketers have lauded the Indian all-rounder for the way he has led the team to a brilliant victory.
Many have considered him a deserving candidate for the Indian captaincy in the future. The way he led his troops and his captaincy tactics certainly gained the praise of many. Former Indian cricketer, Sanjay Manjrekar, also believes that he is one for the future.
During a discussion on ESPNCricinfo, Manjrekar lauded Hardik and said that the GT skipper bowled brilliantly and batted at No. 4 in tough situations. He also said that the 28-year-old also led his team like former Indian skipper MS Dhoni. The former Indian cricketers also highlighted the way he used R. Sai Kishor and made him bowl the 16th and 18th over.
Manjrekar concluded, "His captaincy was similar to MS Dhoni’s, as he made the decisions according to match situations. He seems to be enjoying the captaincy and looks very relaxed."
Notably, the GT skipper won the "Man of the Match" award for his all-round performance in the final. He bowled a brilliant spell of 3/17 in his four overs. Then he came back to bat and played a crucial knock of 34 runs.
And with the win, Hardik has also gone past MS Dhoni in terms of IPL trophy wins. The CSK skipper has won the IPL four times (2010, 2011, 2018, and 2021) and Hardik has now won five times. He won four times with Mumbai (2015, 2017, 2019 and 2020) and he won the 2022 title, captaining the new franchise.
He has also become the second fastest captain to win the IPL trophy in terms of matches. Hardik won the IPL by captaining in 15 matches, while Rohit leads with 13 matches.