‘We Don't want luxury': Captain Hardik Pandya slams West Indies cricket board for not making ‘basic arrangements’ for Team India
The awards ceremony after the final ODI of the series and the Indian captains seem to be a fiery mix. After the women's team captain Harmnapreet Kaur was heavily criticised and given a two-match suspension for her actions in the third ODI against Bangladesh and her comments about the umpires in the post-match presentation, the men's team stand-in captain Hardik Pandya questioned the arrangements made by the West Indies Cricket Board for their tour.
After India beat West Indies by 200 runs in the third ODI to win the three-match series 2-1, Hardik didn't try to hide his displeasure with the trip plans and other arrangements.
Hardik was leading for the second time in a row because regular leader Rohit Sharma and star batter Virat Kohli were again taken out of the game to give younger players like Sanju Samson and Ruturaj Gaikwad more chances. Daren Ganga, a former West Indies opener who is now a well-known broadcaster, asked Hardik about the facilities at the Brian Cricket Stadium in Tarouba, which was hosting its first ODI for the first time.
Hardik called the stadium "one of the nicest" places to play, but the all-rounder quickly moved on to talk about the problems with the West Indies Cricket Board during India's trip. Hardik then said that he didn't have "basic necessities" and asked the hosts to make sure that didn't happen again.
‘Time for West Indies board to take note of it’: Hardik Pandya not happy with arrangements in the Caribbean
"This was one of the most beautiful places we've played. When we come to West Indies again, things might be better. From going places to taking care of a lot of things. There were some bumps in the road last year, too. I think it's time for West Indies Cricket to pay attention and make sure that when a team travels…we don't need luxury, but we do need the basics taken care of. "Other than that, I really enjoyed coming here and playing some good cricket," Hardik Pandya said on Tuesday.
The Indian cricketers had already told BCCI that they were upset because their late-night trip from Trinidad to Barbados was delayed by almost four hours. This meant that they didn't get enough sleep before the first ODI of the series. The top cricket players even asked the BCCI not to schedule flights late at night when there isn't much time between games.
Earlier in the day, Hardik made headlines with a jokey answer to former West Indies spinner Samuel Badree, who had asked the all-rounder about the pressure of being the first Indian captain to lose an ODI series to West Indies in 17 years if India didn't win the decider. "It's alright. "I like to be different," Hardik said.
Hardik wasn't just yelling fire when he had the mic in his hand. Even when he was playing, he was in the same kind of mood. Hardik, who came in at No. 5, took his time and then started hitting hard in the last five overs of India's innings. This brought India's total to 351/5, which is their best ODI score in the Caribbean islands. Hardik's score of 70 off 52 balls, with five sixes and four fours, kept him from being out.
The Indian bowlers were too good for the West Indian hitters. Mukesh Kumar took three wickets with the first ball, which put the home team behind. Kuldeep Yadav and Shardul Thakur then didn't give them a chance to catch up. West Indies were only able to score 151 runs before India got them out. This was India's second-biggest win against West Indies in terms of how much they won by.
"I want to be in pressure situations as captain," says Hardik Pandya
"This is a big win. As captain, I really look forward to these kinds of games where something is at stake. This was more than a game between countries. We knew what was at stake and that if we lost, there would be a lot of sadness. The boys were very good people. They also liked it, which is important when you're under a lot of stress. Hardik said, "You can't be a hero if you can't handle stress."
Hardik said that the hitters set up the game and that he was proud of his new-ball bowlers for winning the game in the powerplay. "It was always important to get 350. When you have a score like that, hitters try to hit the ball, and if you're lucky, they'll get it. Gill made a few really good stops. West Indies didn't get up until very late, and that pair kept the game going until the 34th over. The game was pretty much over during the power play."
Hardik will be the captain for the five T20I matches against the West Indies, which will start on Thursday at the same place.