Wasim Jaffer sounds 'rusty' warning for Hardik Pandya after Asia Cup-bound India's stunning loss to West Indies
India was defeated by the West Indies by eight wickets in the fifth and final T20I in Florida on Sunday. West Indies reached 171/2 in 18 overs, chasing a target of 166, courtesy to an unbeaten dedication of 85 runs off 55 balls by Brandon King.
During his uninterrupted innings, the opener also hit five fours and six sixes. Meanwhile, India's Arshdeep Singh and Tilak Varma each took a wicket.
Initially, India achieved 165/9 in 20 overs, with West Indies' Romario Shepherd grabbing four wickets. In the meantime, Akeal Hosein and Jason Holder both took two wickets. Suryakumar Yadav led the way for India, scoring 61 runs off 45 deliveries.
West Indies also won the five-match series 3-2 as a result of the outcome. The form of stand-in captain Hardik Pandya will be a source of concern heading into the ODI World Cup. During the series, the all-rounder scored 77 runs with a strike rate of 110. Meanwhile, his bowling was not up to par.
Former India cricketer Wasim Jaffer stated on Crichistory.com that Pandya did not appear to be in good form, which may prove troublesome for his team. To make matters worse, Pandya only managed 14 runs off 18 deliveries in the series finale.
"Well, it has been a source of concern. He appears to be rusty. We can't say the same about Hardik Pandya, who comes in and strikes it softly. This does not imply hitting sixes, but rather striking it neatly and turning the strike.
Apart from the fifty he scored in the third ODI, which he likewise started slowly and picked up in the slog overs. "But even then, he appeared a little rusty," Jaffer remarked.
"That is a source of concern for me." That was a major issue given how Hardik Pandya batted in the series. Not every time he will begin slowly and finish fiercely. This was also evident in this series.
As soon as he arrives, the momentum decreases, the strike-rate drops, and the pressure on the other guys in the dugout increases. Something for him to be concerned about, take note of, and work on," he added.
Hardik's form will also be a source of concern in the next Asia Cup, which is set to begin on August 31 with India's opener against archrivals Pakistan on September 2.