Former Indian cricketer Virender Sehwag isn't happy with the fact that Hardik Pandya isn't bowling in the ODI series and stated that if he can bowl in the T20I series why not ODIs. He also added that Hardik has hardly played cricket and there hasn't been much workload on him thus far.
Hardik Pandya, like the Australia ODI series, has continued to play as a specialist batsman in the ongoing 50-overs games against England as well. Though in the five-match T20I series, he was bowing consistently and quite effectively as well. Virat Kohli, after the second ODI, had stated that Pandya wasn't bowling as part of his bowling workload management.
However, former Indian opener, Virender Sehwag isn't too impressed with how Hardik Pandya's workload is being managed by India. He stated that if he can bowl in T20Is why not ODIs, besides adding that if he plays as a pure batsman then he will be assessed differently than he is when playing as an all-rounder.
"At least to make a change, Hardik Pandya could have been given a spell of 3-4 overs. I don't understand if he can bowl four overs in T20I cricket, then why cannot he do the same in ODI cricket," Sehwag asked on Cricbuzz, reported HT.
"If he only wants to play as a batsman, then say that he will only play as a batsman in ODI cricket, so then his performance will be assessed accordingly. Because as an allrounder you sometimes get an advantage, that if you are unable to perform with the bat on one day, then you performed with the ball.
"Or vice-versa. But if he is not going to ball, then he will only be assessed as a batsman. So, I am little disappointed that Pandya did not bowl a single over. If he is fit, he can bowl four overs in T20Is, so he could have bowled a couple of overs. If he had got a breakthrough, it would have helped the team," he added.
Sehwag also asserted that the younger Pandya brother has hardly bowled much post his surgery and was perplexed as to who decides his workload.
"If there are no overs in Hardik Pandya's workload, then I feel something is wrong. Kohli said that workload management is being done for all bowlers including Pandya. But it cannot be so that he does not bowl a single over. Fielding for 50 overs is also tiring, so if he bowls four-five overs in between, it would not increase the workload much.
"I don't know who decides that Pandya's workload has increased. Because since he has returned from surgery, he has not played much cricket," Sehwag said.
He concluded by saying that had he played non-stop cricket it would still have been understandable and suggested there might be a case that Hardik isn't bowling so that he doesn't get injured ahead of the IPL.
"He missed the Tests. He has played 3 T20Is, in which he bowled four-six overs. The load of work has not even come on him yet since he has returned to fitness. If he was playing non-stop cricket across all formats, then I would have understood it. But he has no load on himself yet. He has only played T20Is. Maybe he might have said that he will not bowl 10 overs in ODI cricket, because if I get injured I might have to miss IPL."