India vs Sri Lanka: Hardik Pandya can do for us what Ben Stokes does for England, says Virat Kohli

PTI, Jul, 29 2017

Galle: India captain Virat Kohli feels that all-rounder Hardik Pandya has all the skill sets required to emulate world's premier all-rounder Ben Stokes.

"I have a lot of faith in him (Hardik) as far as any format is concerned. If he grows in confidence — you see someone like Ben Stokes, what he does for England, brings in great balance as an all-rounder. I see no reason why Hardik Pandya can't become that for India," Kohli said at the post-match press conference.

India's Hardik Pandya celebrates scoring his maiden half century during the second day's play of the first test cricket match between India and Sri Lanka in Galle, Sri Lanka, Thursday, July 27, 2017. (AP Photo/Eranga Jayawardena)

Hardik Pandya celebrates scoring his maiden half century in the first Test between India and Sri Lanka in Galle. AP

Kohli singled out Pandya for special mention, praising his second innings bowling apart from his debut half-century.

"In the first innings, he didn't get opportunity to bowl much but I think in the second innings, he bowled really nicely on a wicket that wasn't offering much and he kept it in the right areas," said Kohli.

The skipper was impressed as to how Pandya used the shirt ball and also the speed at which he bowled.

"He used the bouncer well. He bowls around 135, so he is a great asset and I have mentioned this before as well," he said.

His whirlwind 50 in the first innings was the difference between a total of 550 and 600.

"We would have been 540-550 in the first innings. He got those 50 runs quickly and that saves you time as well. That gives you another 15 overs to bowl at the opposition. And his fielding is also tremendous.

Published Date: Jul 29, 2017 | Updated Date: Jul 29, 2017



Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4493 125
2 South Africa 3395 110
3 England 4097 105
4 Australia 3087 100
5 New Zealand 3114 97
Rank Team Points Rating
1 South Africa 5957 119
2 Australia 5505 117
3 India 4717 115
4 England 5645 113
5 New Zealand 5123 111
Rank Team Points Rating
1 New Zealand 1625 125
2 England 1962 123
3 Pakistan 2417 121
4 West Indies 2222 117
5 India 2183 115