Former Indian cricketer Ajay Jadeja has stated that Rohit Sharma should consider passing on the captaincy of India’s T20I team to Hardik Pandya. Pandya recently led India to a 2-1 series win against Sri Lanka in the three-match T20I series at home. In the wake of India’s disappointing performance in the T20 World Cup 2022, there have been calls for a new captain to take over the leadership of the T20I team.
Jadeja cited the example of former captain MS Dhoni, who handed the captaincy over to Virat Kohli, and suggested that Rohit should do the same by entrusting the leadership duties to Pandya. In an interview with Cricbuzz, Jadeja said: “At the moment we’ve still got Rohit Sharma, who has been leading and his records show that he is the best captain. There is never a king waiting, all kings had to grab their place. Because waiting means it’s the right of a king who he gives it to. Like Mahendra Singh Dhoni gave it to Virat Kohli, it wasn’t the board or selectors. [It was] Mahendra Singh Dhoni who picked Virat Kohli and said I think you should take it on from here. I feel that’s how it should be.”
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Jadeja also praised Pandya for his leadership skills, saying that the decisions he made during the series worked well for the team. He said: “He (Pandya) used Umran well, he’s done all the right things. The only thing, when I see him again I’ll say just because a week ago you were not captain and a week later you are doesn’t mean you don’t have to run as fast as you were running or fielding. Or being as athletic as you were, you as a player should not go down. And just don’t worry about the team alone, because you as a champion player is more important than leading.”
Pandya has had a successful track record as a leader in the past. He led Gujarat Titans to a title in their first edition and helped the national team secure a series win against New Zealand. His recent series win against Sri Lanka adds another feather to his cap as a leader. It remains to be seen whether Rohit Sharma will consider handing over the captaincy to Pandya, but the all-rounder has certainly proven himself to be a capable leader.