Cricket News: Hardik Pandya talks about the T20 roadmap
Ahead of India's first assignment in New Zealand after their T20 World Cup heartbreak, Hardik Pandya made it clear that while the team was disappointed, they were working on a new roadmap to build a successful team
"Yes, we all know there is a disappointment from the World Cup but we are professionals and we need to cope with it," he said in a press conference.
"How we cope with our success, we cope with our failures, move forward, and look forward to getting better and rectifying our mistakes."
"The next T20 World Cup is almost two years away, so we have time to unearth new talent. A lot of cricket will be played, and many people will get enough chances."
"The roadmap starts from now. But it's too fresh right now. We have a lot of time so we will sit down and have conversations on these grounds."
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">New challenge, new energy 🥶 <a href="https://t.co/OUayi3C3vA">pic.twitter.com/OUayi3C3vA</a></p>— hardik pandya (@hardikpandya7) <a href="https://twitter.com/hardikpandya7/status/1593119786099421184?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 17, 2022</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
Now that Hardik Pandya is a senior squad member and will have some degree of influence in the 'conversations' his reference is not surprising.
But how he spoke about players getting chances and building a new roadmap for the future sounds like the team leader talking rather than just one of the leaders.
It could mean one of two things. In recent times, Hardik Pandya has assumed a lot more responsibility, acting as a statesman and senior member of the squad both in public and private.
Or he is being groomed already to be India's next captain in at least the T20I format, if not their next white-ball captain.
In many ways, it would be a sensible choice. Hardik Pandya might have a limited sample size as a skipper in any format. Still, that limited sample size saw him add a sixth IPL title to his cabinet – and his first IPL trophy with new team Gujarat Titans, who only made their debut in 2022 when they won the title.
Plus, Hardik Pandya has spoken about wanting players to express themselves, play freely and back their ability in any circumstances.
In many ways, that jives with how he plays his own game – reflected in how the Gujarat Titans went about with their business in 2022.
Plus, why would a player speak about roadmaps and giving new players a chance if he didn't have a significant hand in selecting those players and building the roadmap on his terms?
In many ways, Hardik Pandya's potential captaincy would represent a marked departure for India because they would embrace the split captaincy template adopted by many countries.
It has been used sparingly in India, and India's last few captains have all gone on to become all-format skippers.
However, in today's day and age, where the volume of cricket seems to increase yearly, adopting a split model makes sense.
How Hardik Pandya may fare as a national team captain is anyone's guess. But how he's already being seen as a potential candidate speaks volumes about his leadership.
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