Former Indian cricketer Ashish Nehra believes Hardik Pandya should not have denied Dinesh Karthik a single in the first T20I against South Africa. Karthik is a well-known finisher who is currently in excellent form.
It would have been understandable if Nehra had been the non-striker, but denying a single to an established batter like Karthik should not be tolerated, he joked.
Ashish Nehra jokes about Hardik Pandya denying single
Former India fast bowler and Gujarat Titans head coach Ashish Nehra made a joke about Hardik Pandya’s decision not to return the strike to Dinesh Karthik in the final over of India’s innings against South Africa in the first T20I on Thursday. Hardik denied a single in the final over’s penultimate delivery and asked Karthik to return to the non-striker’s end.
In the final over of the innings, Anrich Nortje dismissed Rishabh Pant on the first ball. Dinesh Karthik then went to bat and missed the first ball but took a single in the next ball to give Pandya the strike. The former Mumbai Indians stalwart hit a six-over long-off on the fourth ball, but he refused to run for a single on the next ball in order to save the strike for the final one. Then he failed to hit the final ball over the fence, resulting in only two runs scored.
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On the other end, it was Karthik, the Indian Premier League 2022 finisher with the highest strike rate. Indians fans were quick to criticize Pandya on social media for his behaviour in the final over. Because he was playing for India almost three years later, many people wanted to see the wicketkeeper finish the game yesterday. Ashish Nehra, Pandya’s franchise coach, also expressed his thoughts on the player denying a single in the final over, but only jokingly.
“He should have taken a single in that final over. Dinesh Karthik was at the other end, it wasn’t me.” Ashish Nehra said.
Hardik’s ability to bat anywhere in the order was lauded by Nehra. Hardik primarily promoted himself and played at No. 3 for the Gujarat Titans (GT) in the IPL 2022 season, but he is primarily a specialist finisher for India.
“Hardik Pandya is such an actor that can play any role. Be it, a hero, or a villain. If you want him to play the heroine, he can do that also, because he has the ability and the game to bat in any situation,” Nehra said.
“Not just in T20I cricket but also in the 50-over format and Test cricket. He has incredible ability in his batting. He can score runs in No. 4 and No. 3 as well. Hardik Pandya has played this finisher’s role for a long time. He can bat anywhere because of his ability and the work he has done,” he added.