“You’ve to block…” – Trent Boult’s advice to Hardik Pandya amid backlash from Rohit Sharma fans

Hardik Pandya is having a hard time as Mumbai Indians captain in IPL 2024 so far. The franchise has lost both their opening games and will take on Rajasthan Royals on Monday in a must-win game in many ways.

Hardik Pandya’s captaincy in the first two games have been talked about a lot. His decisions especially with rotating his bowlers have been a subject of debate after Mumbai’s opening losses.

Traditionally a slow starter in the IPL, Mumbai Indians lost their opening game against Gujarat Titans by six runs and the second game against SRHJ by 21 runs chasing a record score of 278.

Hardik was traded from Gujarat Titans to Mumbai Indians keeping the future of the franchise in mind. He was also named the captain of the franchise replacing a successful skipper in Rohit Sharma who won five titles as captain.

The decision to switch Hardik from MI to GT for a record deal was the biggest breaking news before the season started. The Indian cricketing fraternity failed to understand the rationale behind it.

Also Read: Hardik Pandya angry on Rohit Sharma? MI skipper’s reaction to getting booed by fans revealed by Piyush Chawla

Mumbai Indians Lost First Two Games Under Hardik Pandya

Given his bad start to captaincy, Hardik was criticized for his decision-making. He opened the bowling in Mumbai’s first game against GT and went for 30 runs off his three overs. He did not start with Jasprit Bumrah in the first as well as in the second game against SRH.

There were talks about Hardik’s carefree approach in his post-match interactions after Mumbai lost both their first two games. Him being out of the team and not playing any international cricket in the lead-up to the IPL added more pressure on him.

There were talks about him leading India in the T20 World Cup. However, the BCCI Secretary Jay Shah confirmed that Rohit will indeed lead the team in the ICC event.

Hardik Pandya missing international cricket since the IPL is what has been talked about a lot in the lead-up up to the IPL as well. With not enough cricket behind his back, him being announced as the Mumbai Indians skipper, and more importantly, Rohit Sharma being asked to step down was what angered the Indian cricket fraternity and the Indian fans in general.

Meanwhile, Trent Boult, Hardik’s former Mumbai Indians teammate in an interaction with reporters had given his support to the Indian all-rounder and said that the fans booing the MI skipper is not something that he has control of.

“It is something you cannot control, as professional sportspeople it is what you are exposed to in a way. You have to block out the white noise and focus on the job, it is easier said than done,” Boult told the media here at the Wankhede Stadium.

Dont Think Booing Will Hold Out For Too Long: Trent Boult

He further said that Hardik Pandya is one of his favorite cricketers and expects the booing of the fans will eventually die down once Mumbai starts winning in IPL 2024.

“There are a lot of passionate fans in this country and speaking of Hardik specifically, he is one of my favourite Indian cricketers and I do not think the booing will hold out for too long. I am sure, he is one of those guys who can put it aside and focus on the job,” Boult concluded saying.

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