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WI vs IND: Hardik Pandya doesn’t have to be MS Dhoni, says Aakash Chopra on Tilak Varma fifty fiasco

Aakash Chopra has jumped to the defence of India skipper Hardik Pandya after the all-rounder was criticized by fans for not allowing Tilak Varma to complete a fifty in the third T20I win over West Indies.

Hardik, the Indian cricket team’s skipper for the T20I series against West Indies, faced significant criticism after hitting a six on the last ball of the 3rd T20I match, denying Tilak Varma a half-century.

The incident occurred as India was chasing a target of 160 runs. Despite Varma needing only one run to complete his half-century, Pandya chose to finish the chase with a six, with Tilak being stranded on 49 at the other end.

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This act was labeled ‘selfish’ by fans and sparked a wave of criticism on social media. However, some defended Pandya’s decision, arguing that prioritizing the team’s victory over individual milestones is a rational strategy.

Chopra is the latest to come to the defence of the all-rounder saying that he doesn’t need to follow his idol Dhoni when it comes to these things. Dhoni has famously rotated strike to allow his partners to finish the game or achieve milestones during his time.

Speaking on his YouTube channel ahead of the 4th T20I, as quoted by Sportskeeda, Chopra said that Hardik doesn’t need to become like the former Indian skipper even if he considers him to be his idol.

“Hardik Pandya has been trolled a lot. He has got a lot of criticism, but then there is another school of thought that why are you making so much noise about a milestone? So he is in the middle of conversations.”

“I remember MS Dhoni defending a ball as he wanted Virat Kohli, who was at the other end, to finish it off. So that was Dhoni, but Hardik does not have to be Dhoni. He doesn’t need to do or become like Dhoni even if he considers him his idol,” said Chopra.

Published On:

Aug 12, 2023

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