In what has been the biggest news ahead of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024, Hardik Pandya has been retained by his current franchise Gujarat Titans. This came as a big surprise because since the last few days, there have been a lot of reports of hum moving back to Mumbai Indians (MI).
Hardik Pandya was the first name on the list of retained players by Gujarat Titans. Reports from some big media outlets suggested that the all-rounder is moving to Mumbai Indians as a part of trade. The reports also suggested that it’ll be an all-cash deal in which five-time champions will pay 15 crores along with an undisclosed amount.
The reports circulated so much that even current cricketers and experts of the game reacted to it. Hardik Pandya made his debut in IPL for Mumbai Indians in 2015 and was part of the franchise for 7 long years before he moved to Gujarat Titans ahead of the IPL 2022.
Hardik Pandya led Gujarat Titans to the title victory in the very first year he captained and also led from the front with both bat and ball. The all-rounder in IPL 2023 took his team to the final but lost by the barest margins against Chennai Super Kings, who achieved their 5th title in the league.
“Mumbai Indians Have Struck Gold,” Ravichandran Ashwin Rumours Of Hardik Pandya Joining Five-Time Champions
Ravichandran Ashwin also reacted to rumors of Hardik Pandya joining Mumbai Indians. He said that if the reports are true then the franchise has struck gold. He analyzed how the XI would look if an all-rounder joined the team. Speaking in a video posted on his Instagram account, he explained:
“If it’s true Mumbai Indians have struck gold. If it’s true and it’s a complete cash trade from whatever I’ve read. There’s no player that Mumbai will give. Mumbai Indians have never given players on trade. Hardik is an MI grown player. The team now with Pandya away from Gujarat, it’s incredible. There have been three times where captains have been traded. Me, Ajinkya Rahane and Hardik Pandya. The one difference between us and Pandya is he’s a IPL-winning captain, that completely changes the balance even for Gujarat. But that XI there looks mighty threatening.”
Hardik Pandya has played 123 games in the IPL and has scored 2309 runs at a strike rate of over 145. He also has scored 10 half-centuries. Apart from this he also has picked 53 wickets.
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