Rohit fans bring down Hardik Pandya's poster at a college
From an ordinary Baroda boy to a bankable all-rounder for the Indian cricket team, Hardik Pandya has come a long way. He was born in Choryasi, Surat, Gujarat on October 11, 1993, and is the youngest son of Himanshu Pandya and Nalini Pandya. His father used to run a small car finance business in Surat, but to provide better cricket training facilities to his sons Hardik and Krunal Pandya (Hardik’s elder brother), he closed his small firm and moved to Vadodara. As Pandya belonged to a financially-weak, middle-class family, he used to live in a rented apartment in Gorwa, and used to travel to the cricket ground in a second-hand car.
Hardik Pandya's Career Information
Test Debut: Sri Lanka vs India at Galle International Stadium, July 26, 2017
ODI Debut: India vs New Zealand at Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium, October 16, 2016
T20I Debut: Australia vs India at Adelaide Oval, January 26, 2016
In March 2013, Pandya made his debut in domestic cricket for Baroda against Mumbai in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy 2012-13. He debuted in first-class cricket in November against Madhya Pradesh in the 2013-14 edition of the Ranji Trophy. In April 2014, Baroda won their second Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy title routing Uttar Pradesh in the final. Playing his second season of the tournament, Pandya played a crucial role in making his team champions with his impressive show as an all-rounder.
Amazing T20 International Career:
Pandya marked his international debut in Australia in a three-match T20 series against the hosts in 2016. In the crucial second match, Pandya clinched dangerous Chris Lynn’s wicket and contributed to the team’s comfortable victory to take an unassailable lead. After the Australia tour, Pandya appeared in the 2016 Asia Cup. For the all-rounder, the continental tournament went well as he showcased his all-round talent against teams such as Bangladesh and Pakistan. Facing the arch-rivals for the first time, Pandya looked exceptional with the ball, picking 3/8 figures. After showing his strength in a couple of major tournaments, he got selected for the colossal 2016 T20 World Cup and became the leading wicket-taker for India along with Ashish Nehra.
In July 2018, he registered his second-best T20I bowling figures (4/38) against England at Gloucestershire Cricket Stadium and helped the team to win a maiden T20 International series in England. On February 1, 2023, he led the team from the front, bagging 4/16 figures against New Zealand.
Scintillating One-Day International Journey So Far:
In October 2016, Pandya broke into one-day internationals (ODIs) in a home series against New Zealand. At HPCA Stadium in Dharamsala, he made the game for India with his 3/31 figures with the ball. After the game, he also won the Player of the Match award for his scintillating bowling display. On June 18, 2017, Pandya drew attention due to his fierce batting as he hit 76 runs off just 43 deliveries in the high-voltage Champions Trophy final against Pakistan.
After serving India for more than two and a half years, Pandya went to England with the squad to participate in the 2019 World Cup. In the mega event, Pandya came out as a vital cog for the team due to his incredible all-round talent.
Shambolic Test Campaign:
Like the limited-over forms of the game, Pandya couldn’t be effective for India in red-ball cricket. However, he started his Test career with fine batting performances in his debut series in Sri Lanka. Against the islanders, he scored a maiden ton in the final Test at Pallekele and achieved the record for becoming the first Indian batter to score a century before lunch.
In 2018, he toured England for the five-game Test series and struggled with both bat and ball. Witnessing his dismal show in the competition, In 2021, he couldn’t find a spot in India’s team for the World Test Championship final against New Zealand and the five-match Test tour of England.
Indian Premier League Career:
In February 2015, the Baroda all-rounder became a part of Mumbai Indians (MI) at INR 10 lakh at the mini-auction and appeared in his first season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) held in April-May 2015. In the do-or-die contest against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), he emerged as the Player of the Match with his match-winning knock of 61 runs off 31 deliveries.
The swashbuckling player’s best innings came in 2019 as he smashed 91 runs off 34 deliveries against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at iconic Eden Gardens in a losing cause. After serving MI for seven seasons in the league, Hardik joined Gujarat Titans (GT) and won them their maiden title in their debut season with his captaincy skills and batting talent.
Hardik Pandya's Personal Life:
On January 1, 2020, Pandya got engaged to an India-based Serbian model Natasa Stankovic in Dubai. Later in July 2020, the spunky India batting all-rounder started new innings in his life as his partner Natasa gave birth to a baby boy, who got the name Agastya.