Hardik Pandya's thinking cap is on, it has made him a better cricketer: Sunil Gavaskar

Pandya has been playing the all-rounder's role to perfection.

Hardik Pandya
Hardik Pandya. (Photo Source: IPL/BCCI)

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Hardik Pandya has been donning his captaincy hat to near perfection in the IPL 2022 from the very first day of leading the Gujarat Titans. Of the six matches that the team has played so far, Hardik has captained the team on five occasions and has led them to top positions in the points table.

Hardik Pandya made a good comeback in the tournament after recovering from his injury and returned as the perfect all-rounder that the team was looking for. He has balanced his game along with his captaincy and has managed the pressure really well. Pandya has played some crucial knocks in the league so far and led his team upfront to several victories.

Talking about his form, former India captain and legendary cricketer Sunil Gavaskar shared his views on Pandya’s game this season. Former cricketers Aakash Chopra and Irfan Pathan also praised him for his remarkable comeback.

“He didn’t play a lot of cricket before the IPL because he was trying to get fully fit with all the problems he had due to the injury. (Now) Look at the discipline he’s showing in his batting. He’s batting well in the powerplay and making full use of the field restrictions, he’s doing exceedingly well in the field. So basically, that thinking cap is on; and once that happens your game just goes up,” Gavaskar was quoted by The Hindu.

Hardik has learned the right lessons from MS Dhoni: Aakash Chopra

Pandya has followed MS Dhoni and his game for a long time, and he considers the World Cup-winning captain as his mentor. Former India player and cricket expert Aakash Chopra said that Hardik’s game has developed with time, and said that Pandya’s game and thinking ability as a captain reflects what he has learned from Dhoni.

“I think Hardik obviously treats him (M.S. Dhoni) as his mentor, he’s very close to M.S. With the number at which he bats and the role that he plays, nobody has played it better than Dhoni in the history of white-ball cricket. He has learned the right lessons from M.S. When we are in the company of greatness, we try and take little pieces and it shapes our lives. And that’s what we are seeing with Hardik,” said Chopra.

Pandya already has three half-centuries in the six games so far. Impressed by his batting form, Irfan Pathan said that this is a completely new form of the player, and he has been very responsible for the team this season.

“This is a new Hardik Pandya. This is a better version of him. It was nice to see the situations in which he has played this season. The good thing about Hardik is that he is batting responsibly at No. 4. Whether it is team India or Gujarat Titans, Hardik is the most suited batsman at number four. This is because he can take the responsibility,” Pathan stated.