Following the title-winning campaign of Gujarat Titans (GT) in the IPL 2022 season, former England captain Michael Vaughan believes Hardik Pandya could be a great candidate for Indian team captaincy.
Hardik led from the front with the bat and finished as his team’s top scorer. He also contributed with the ball at times, but most importantly, he remained calm and composed while demonstrating his leadership abilities on the biggest stage.
Michael Vaughan on Hardik Pandya
At the start of the tournament, few experts predicted that Gujarat Titans would advance to the playoffs or win the championship. However, due to their consistent performances and different players stepping up in each game, they finished first in the IPL 2022 league stages with 10 wins in 14 games.
Skipper Pandya was one of the team’s biggest assets, scoring 487 runs in 15 games and finishing as the franchise’s leading scorer. He adapted well to the role of No. 4 and was called up to the Indian squad for the five-match T20I series against South Africa. He also contributed with the ball, taking three wickets in the finals against the Rajasthan Royals, effectively ending the batting side’s momentum.
Hardik took 8 wickets with the ball at an economy rate of 7.28, which is quite impressive considering he bowled mostly in the powerplay and also in the death. Hardik’s form is also encouraging for the Indian team, which requires one of its best all-rounders to perform at the highest level.
Meanwhile, Vaughan was highly impressed with Pandya’s captaincy and noted that India has serious captaincy potential in the coming years.
“Fantastic achievement for a new franchise… If India need a captain in a couple of years I wouldn’t look past @hardikpandya7… Well done Gujurat .. #IPL2022,” Vaughan tweeted.
— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) May 29, 2022
Pandya’s role will be crucial for India in the T20 World Cup 2022, and the all-rounder has now demonstrated that he is capable of leading the team as well. India already has captaincy candidates such as Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, and Jasprit Bumrah, and Pandya is unquestionably on the list.