Rohit Sharma, Chief Selector Ajit Agarkar Were Against Hardik Pandya’s T20 WC Selection

Written by Sumit Seth

Mumbai Indians’ hopes of qualifying for the IPL 2024 have suffered a premature end. The Hardik Pandya-led side is the first team in the IPL 2024 to get knocked out of the league. Before even the tournament began, the Mumbai Indians camp looked unsettled with Rohit Sharma’s removal from the captaincy position. Interestingly, the MI camp has four players who will be playing for the Indian cricket team in the 2024 T20 World Cup. Captain Rohit Sharma, vice-captain Hardik Pandya, Suryakumar Yadav and Jasprit Bumrah are four important members of the Indian side, that will its first 2024 T20 World Cup against Ireland.

According to a new report, it was expected that things in Mumbai Indians were expected to settle down with time. But it didn’t. The report in Dainik Jagran also claimed, quoting sources, that skipper Rohit as well as some of the BCCI selectors including Ajit Agarkar, head of the panel, were not in favour of Hardik Pandya’s inclusion in the 15-member squad. In the IPL 2024, Hardik Pandya has blown hot and cold. In 13 games, he has scored 200 runs at a strike-rate of 144.93, while also taking 11 wickets in 13 matches at an economy of 10.59. Most of his good bowling performances have come in the latter half of the tournament.

The report also said that Pandya was selected for the T20 World Cup “under pressure’. The report further claimed that Rohit might quit the T20 format after the T20 World Cup.

When Rohit and Agarkar attended the press conference after the T20 World Cup squad selection, the chief selector was asked about the inclusion of Hardik in the roster despite his poor form. In response, Agarkar explained how the selection committee didn’t have a choice as there’s no like-for-like replacement for Hardik available from the talent pool that exists.

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Sumit Seth