Hardik Himanshu Pandya born on 11th October 1993 became an Indian international cricketer playing both domestic and international cricket. He would play for Baroda locally and in the IPL or Indian Premier League for the Mumbai Indians. Batting right-handed and bowling right-arm fast medium, he was a leg spinner, until he was 18 years old, after which, he turned into an all-rounder.
With a small car finance business based out of Surat, Himanshu Pandya had a modest living and yet was very passionate about cricket. Hardik was barely five when he moved out of Surat and shifted to Vadodara just so that his sons could receive validated cricket training, as he would even take Hardik to watch many matches. In Vadodara, both Krunal and Hardik enrolled in Kiran More’s cricket academy. The brothers would only get a second-hand car to get to the cricket ground as Himanshu was not financially strong. Even his apartment in Gorwa was rented. Up until the 9th grade, Hardik would study in MK High School, after which he would drop out to pursue cricket full time.
Progressing steadily from junior level cricketing, while playing club cricket, Hardik was known to have won many matches all by himself. An expressive child, who wouldn’t hide his emotions, (uttered by himself), at the insistence of Coach Sanath Kumar, in Baroda, Hardik took up fast bowling. As an all-rounder, he was extremely promising and indispensable to the Indian Cricketing Team. An enthusiastic and equally intense and skillful cricketer, Hardik would go on to become the Man of the Match even in his debut ODI (One Day International) match. He was also a confident cricketer who not just smashed sixes on the field but also scored the fastest ever half-century in the finals of the ICC Champions Trophy.
|Full Name||:||Hardik Himanshu Pandya|
|Date of Birth||:||11/10/1993|
|Birth Place||:||Choryasi, Surat, Gujarat, India|
|Nickname||:||Harry, Neymar of India|
|Height||:||6 ft 0 in (183cm)|
|Siblings||:||Krunal Pandya (elder brother, cricketer)|
|School||:||MK High School, Baroda (9th)|
|Hobbies||:||Listening to Music, Traveling|
|Bowling Style||:||Right-arm fast medium|
|National Side||:||India (2016-present)|
|ODI Debut||:||16 October 2016 vs New Zealand, Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh, India (cap 215)|
|Test Debut||:||26 July 2017 vs Sri Lanka, Galle, Sri Lanka (cap 289)|
|T20 Debut||:||26 January 2016 vs Australia, Adelaide, Australia (cap 58)|
|ODI Shirt No||:||33|
|T20I Shirt No||:||33|
|Teams||:||Baroda cricket team, Mumbai Indians (squad no. 33), Indian Board President’s XI|
RECORDS & ACHIEVEMENTS
Hardik would encounter many difficulties as a teenager, which would include his father suffering from heart attacks thrice, and even quitting his job. Then providence struck in the form of a local league match in Baroda, one day, when the boy was noticed since the match required a fast bowler. Kiran More asked him to accept the opportunity immediately. That day, Hardik Pandya picked 7 wickets in a match and left everyone dumbfounded. Thereafter, Pandya changed his bowling style to become a medium pacer from a leg spinner. Impressed by his performance, for the first three years, Kiran More would help him but without charging a single penny.
The fearless and big hitting lad was chosen to make his T20 debut in 2013 at Ahmadabad in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy.
While being a key contributing player in innumerable matches for Team India, Hardik Pandya’s passion for cricket was unsurpassed. In many of the tournaments, he has been instrumental in leading India to victory with his fearless style and boundaries. He was always considered as an IPL breed even as he was playing for the Baroda Cricket Team in his domestic rounds. Due to his West Indian panache and behavior, he would often be known as the ‘West Indian guy from Baroda’. In the 2015 season of the IPL, he scored 21 runs off just 8 balls and thereafter took three of the most crucial catches of the match, leading Mumbai Indians to a victory against the Chennai Super Kings. On October the 16th, 2016, he made his ODI debut at Dharamshala. Hardik Pandya was already playing his T20 debut against Australia when he was just 22 years old.
Since 2013, Hardik has been playing for the Baroda Cricket team, from where too, in 2013-14, he won the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy that season. It was Sachin Tendulkar, who called him aside after his first qualifier against the Chennai Super Kings and told him that Hardik would indeed play for India in the next 18 months. That evening Hardik Pandya was awarded the Man of the Match award for not just scoring 21 runs off 8 balls but also for taking three very important wickets. During the Asia Cup and ICC World Twenty20 both in 2016, Hardik was called to play for the Indian team, within just one year. He proved that he truly was the wonder of cricket when he scored 61 off just 31 balls to win a match for the Mumbai Indians against the Kolkata Knight Riders. The Mumbai Indians would be among only the 4 teams to reach the top order. Again, he was awarded the Man of the Match for the season along with the Yes Bank Maximum Sixes Award.
On 27th January 2016, at only 22 years of age, Hardik Pandya forayed into T20 International Cricket playing for India and against Australia, he would pick up two crucial wickets, one of them being Chris Lynn. At Ranchi, he batted ahead of MS Dhoni and Yuvraj Singh and scored 27 runs off 14 balls, playing another T20 International Cricket against the Sri Lankans. Pandya then, in the 2016 Asia cup, smashed 31 runs off 18 balls providing India a leading score against Bangladesh. Playing against Pakistan, he bowled and managed to restrict the contenders at just 83 runs. On 23rd March, he was up against Bangladesh where he took 2 important wickets in the match’s final over and the last three balls. This way, India could beat Bangladesh by just a single run. Hardik’s best was yet to come and he was at the best bowling peak of his career where he scored against England achieving 4 for 38. He was, finally, hitting winning runs with a 6-er of Jordan on 8th of July, 2018 where he scored 33 runs off 14 balls (Not Out). In the same T20 International Match, he was the first Indian to score more than 30 runs and to even take 4 wickets.
Hardik Pandya is unstoppable. He had a great ODI career as well, where, in October 2016, he also debuted against New Zealand at Dharamshala. He is the fourth Indian accorded the ‘player of the match’ title in an ODI debut only after K.L. Rahul, Sandeep Patil, and Mohit Sharma.