IND vs NZ: Why is Hardik Pandya not playing today’s 2023 World Cup match?

Updated on: Oct 21, 2023 4:32 pm IST

hardik pandya injury update

Hardik Pandya, the dynamic all-rounder for the Indian cricket team, is set to miss today’s 2023 World Cup match.

Why is Hardik Pandya not playing today?

Hardik Pandya has been ruled out due to an ankle injury that he sustained during the previous game against Bangladesh in Pune. This unfortunate injury has ruled him out of the upcoming clash against New Zealand in Dharamsala.

Pandya’s injury occurred during his first over in the match against Bangladesh, specifically in the ninth over of their innings. While attempting to stop a shot with his foot during his follow-through, he appeared to twist his left ankle, leading to his withdrawal from the game. After undergoing scans, it was determined that he would not travel with the team to Dharamsala on October 20. Instead, he will join the squad directly in Lucknow, where India is scheduled to play against England on October 29.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) confirmed Pandya’s absence, stating that he has been advised rest and will be under the constant supervision of the BCCI medical team. The injury, fortunately, is not reported to be severe, but with ankle injuries, daily assessment is necessary to gauge the extent of recovery.

Hardik Pandya’s absence poses a significant challenge for India. He is not only a key contributor with the bat but also provides a crucial bowling option, serving as the team’s sixth bowler. His versatility makes him a vital asset, and India’s strategy will need to be adjusted to compensate for his absence.

Replacing Pandya is a challenging task, as he is a unique player with a well-rounded skill set. There is no like-for-like replacement available, which means the team management will need to rethink their combination against New Zealand. One potential option is to introduce Suryakumar Yadav as a replacement for Pandya and Mohammed Shami for Shardul Thakur. However, this would leave India with just five specialist bowlers.

While Pandya’s absence is a setback, India’s strong performance in the tournament thus far, winning all their four matches, reflects the depth and adaptability of the squad. The team currently stands second on the points table, trailing only behind New Zealand in terms of net run rate. As they adjust to Pandya’s absence, they will look to continue their winning momentum in this crucial fixture against New Zealand.

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