Cricket

“Won’t Be The Same”: Sunil Gavaskar On Hardik Pandya vs

File photo of former India captain and batting legend Sunil GavaskarHardik Pandya's Gujarat Titans take on Mumbai Indians on Friday and a victory will all but ensure the debutants a place in the play-offs. Hardik Pandya's leadership has been a revelation this season and he would want to put his A Game out there in…

File photo of former India captain and batting legend Sunil Gavaskar

Hardik Pandya’s Gujarat Titans take on Mumbai Indians on Friday and a victory will all but ensure the debutants a place in the play-offs. Hardik Pandya’s leadership has been a revelation this season and he would want to put his A Game out there in the middle against his former team, who decided to not retain him. But Mumbai Indians were quite clear they would try to get Hardik back in the auction but that opportunity wasn’t available as the Titans offered the all-rounder a chance to lead the new franchise.

The result has been outstanding for both Hardik and Gujarat but MI have felt the power hitter’s absence in their line up as they are currently at the bottom of the points table and are virtually out of the reckoning for a place in the play-offs.

But will this Hardik vs Mumbai face-off be as intense as the one we saw on Thursday when David Warner took on his old franchise SunRisers Hyderabad? Well, former India captain and batting legend Sunil Gavaskar doesn’t feel so.

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“To win will mean they (GT) qualify. So that becomes important. Obviously he would want to do his best against the team. But he also owes so much to the Mumbai Indians. MI were the first to give him the break when he really wasn’t known outside Baroda. He and Krunal. And from there both of them have come out so well.

“They are brilliant and top-class cricketers. He would want to do well because he wasn’t retained, but each team could only retain 3 or 4 players. And MI took the right decision by retaining the players they did. And they were also probably hoping they would buy him back, but that didn’t work out. But it surely won’t be like what we saw today with Warner against SRH. What happened last year (with Warner) wasn’t a pleasant one which we all saw. So, it will not be the same for Hardik vs Mumbai Indians,” Gavaskar said in the post-match show of the DC vs SRH match on host broadcaster Star Sports.

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