IND vs AFG: Hardik Pandya repays mentor Dhoni’s trust, plays the finisher role to power India to highest total of T20WC 2021

Hardik Pandya the batsman turned up for potentially India’s most important clash as he delivered the finishing touches to the innings against Afghanistan. After Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul put on a century stand, the onus was on Hardik Pandya and Rishabh Pant to deliver the goods, and they did so in some style. Pandya was at his imperious best, repaying the trust mentor MS Dhoni put in him during the T20 World Cup.

Hardik Pandya put on a show later in the innings for India as the Men in Blue posted the highest total of the T20 World Cup 2021. The Indian all-rounder slammed 35 off just 13 balls to power India to 210, putting on a fine partnership with Rishabh Pant in the back end of the innings. Pandya hit four boundaries and two sixes in his short stay in the crease, showcasing his brute power and his fantastic hitting ability.

Hardik Pandya’s inclusion was a major talking point surrounding India’s T20 World Cup 2021 campaign. The Mumbai Indians star was woefully out of entering the tournament and his questions surrounded his ability to bowl. While the selectors wanted to replace Pandya from the squad, mentor MS Dhoni backed the all-rounder to come good. Hardik and Dhoni have spent time in the middle, and the Indian team mentor was adamant about retaining Hardik Pandya for the tournament.

Earlier, Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul put on the highest opening partnership for India in T20 World Cups. The duo put in 140 in just over 14 overs to give India a commanding start, before Hardik Pandya and Rishabh Pant went beserk, scoring 63 off the last 21 deliveries to take the Men in Blue to 210.