Team India registered a comprehensive win in the three-match T20I series against Australia, beating the home side in the first two games. The side made a remarkable comeback from the loss in the ODI series, and will aim to secure a clean sweep in the final T20I which takes place later today.
Many players stepped up through the course of the limited-overs series for India, but one name which stood apart with his consistent performances was Hardik Pandya.
3rd T20I: India look to deliver knockout punch, aim for clean sweep against Australia ahead of Tests
Pandya, who had been included in the squad purely as a batsman, justified his inclusion with a number of match-winning innings. In the final ODI, Pandya remained unbeaten on 92 as he aided India to a 13-run win.
In the second T20I, the swashbuckling batsman scored 42 off just 22 deliveries, finishing the match with a six. Pandya has since been receiving praise from fans and experts alike, and the latest to join the list of his admirers is former England captain Michael Vaughan.
He believes that Pandya could be the "next superstar" for Team India after Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Virat Kohli.
“MS Dhoni, he had that mantle for many years. Virat Kohli has it now. It’s generally the Indian players that get put onto that pedestal and I think Hardik’s got a chance to be the next superstar,” said Vaughan in a conversation on Cricbuzz.
While Dhoni led India to twin World Cup triumphs and ended his career as one of the most successful captains for the country, Kohli, who is currently the skipper in all formats, is widely regarded as the best batsman in the world.
“He has to look at the next three years. With the next T20 world cup being in India, obviously, the IPL being in India, the next 50-over World Cup is in India in 2023, Hardik Pandya has got a great opportunity to become the next global superstar,” Vaughan further said.