Hardik Pandya Highlights the Unique Challenges Faced by All-Rounders in Cricket

Hardik Pandya, the Indian cricket team’s vice-captain, sheds light on the unique challenges and responsibilities faced by all-rounders in the sport.

As India geared up for their Super Four encounter against Pakistan in the Asia Cup, all-rounder and vice-captain Hardik Pandya offered valuable insights into the distinctive challenges and mindset of a cricketer who excels in both batting and bowling roles. He emphasized that his workload during a match is significantly higher than that of most other players.

Following a major back surgery post the 2019 ODI World Cup in England, Pandya had faced limitations in his all-round capabilities. However, a transformation in his lifestyle and approach to fitness has seen him return to peak form, making him a reliable all-rounder for the team in preparation for the 2023 Men’s ODI World Cup in India.

“In my role as an all-rounder, my workload is two to three times that of anyone else. While a batsman finishes his batting and heads home, I’m often still required to bowl,” Pandya explained in an interview with Star Sports.

On match days, Pandya adapts his role to suit the specific conditions and team requirements. He maintains the flexibility to adjust his contributions based on the situation. “When the game day arrives, it’s all about what the team needs, and considerations like workload management take a back seat. It’s about making practical decisions regarding how many overs I need to bowl. If 10 overs aren’t required, there’s no point in me bowling 10 overs. But if the team needs it, then I’ll certainly bowl.”

Pandya emphasized his belief in self-reliance and the need to make sound judgments on the field. “I’ve always believed in giving myself a chance to succeed by reading the game and having confidence in my abilities. When I’m out there, I have the support of my teammates, but I also understand that, in essence, I’m on my own.”

Elaborating further, Pandya stated, “When I’m bowling, I have to trust my skills completely because the opposition expects me to make a mistake. Similarly, when I’m batting, I recognize that although there’s a teammate alongside me, I’m essentially facing an eleven-member opposition, along with the influence of the crowd. Regardless of the circumstances, one must maintain self-belief and consider themselves the best in the world. While this doesn’t guarantee success, it guides you towards working for success. It’s all about backing yourself in a practical sense.”