Rahul Dravid admitted that Hardik Pandya’s absence would affect India’s balance in the top-of-the-table ODI World Cup 2023 : Indian coach Rahul Dravid conceded that the unavailability of Hardik Pandya would disrupt India’s team balance in their pivotal ODI World Cup clash against New Zealand, a top-of-the-table encounter scheduled for Sunday.

Rahul Dravid admitted that Hardik Pandya’s absence would affect India’s balance in the top-of-the-table ODI World Cup 2023 : In the realm of the 2023 World Cup, Indian mentor Rahul Dravid openly conceded the conspicuous void left by Hardik Pandya’s non-participation. This deficiency is set to cast a shadow over India’s equilibrium in their pivotal showdown with New Zealand, a team that reigns atop the One Day International (ODI) World Cup standings. This impending clash, scheduled for Sunday, holds the key to shaping the tournament’s future trajectory.

Rahul Dravid, the esteemed head coach of the Indian cricket team, openly acknowledged the potential disruption to the team’s equilibrium as they head into their fifth World Cup encounter. This disruption arises from the unfortunate injury sidelining their versatile all-rounder, Hardik Pandya.

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However, adversity often presents an opportunity for innovation. Dravid emphasized that Pandya’s absence could serve as a catalyst for the team to experiment with a fresh combination when facing New Zealand. The all-rounder, Pandya, will be notably absent from the upcoming clash against New Zealand due to an ankle injury sustained during their triumphant seven-wicket triumph over Bangladesh.

“Hardik is a pivotal figure within our team, and it’s quite evident that his absence in this upcoming game will require us to adapt. We will strategize and explore the best possible combination with the available 14 players. However, it’s undeniable that we will miss the harmonious balance we’ve enjoyed in our initial four matches,” shared Rahul Dravid with the media in the lead-up to the New Zealand showdown.

Hardik Pandya’s unfortunate incident unfolded during the match against Bangladesh when he released the second delivery to opener Litton Das. In an attempt to control the ball using his right leg during the ninth over, an unexpected mishap occurred. The ball, instead, found its way to the boundary, drawing the cameras’ attention to the Indian all-rounder, who seemed to encounter difficulty in regaining his stability.

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Hardik’s determined spirit was evident as he limped back towards his bowling run-up, drawing enthusiastic cheers from the crowd. Initially, he displayed the intention to continue bowling despite his discomfort. However, it was a last-minute intervention by skipper Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli that prompted a change of plan. Collectively, they advised Hardik to exit the field, prioritizing his well-being.

Following the incident, the Indian team officially announced Hardik’s unavailability for the forthcoming New Zealand match. The timeline for his return places him back with the squad in Lucknow, where India is set to confront England on October 29.

Providing further insights into Hardik’s situation, the team disclosed that he underwent scans after the fall and has been recommended to take a period of rest. Additionally, he will receive continuous care and monitoring from the BCCI Medical Team.


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