With dreams in his eyes, a father of two kids, Krunal and Hardik (aged 7 and 5), took them to More’s cricket academy. Kiran More, former wicket keeper of the Indian cricket team, denied them admittance as the minimum age limit was 12 years.
Himanshu trusted in his sons’ abilities and his blind faith convinced More to try Krunal and Hardik’s skills. More was amazed at the way they carried cricket gear and batted on the field. That was the day some of the rules of Kiran More’s academy changed.
In an interview, Kiran More shared his experience about the Pandya brothers’ first day in his academy and said:
I remember both Krunal and Hardik wore all the cricketing gears and the way they batted, it made me change my decision. It was the day I realised that talent can come in any form or in any age.
While Krunal was struggling to get a place in Baroda Ranji squad, Hardik had already become a household name. When asked what differentiates Hardik Pandya from others, Kiran More said,
Ball solid bhagta hai uske bat se.
This emerging star of cricket stood out in the T20 World cup this year. People are expecting a lot from him. Hardik Pandya is surely a star in the making. Here are some lesser known facts about him that every cricket fan should know.
1. Hardik Pandya is not from a financially strong family. His family has struggled to afford one meal a day.
2. His father has sacrificed a lot for his cricket career. They shifted from Surat to Bandra just for the sake of training.
3. Kiran More did not charge Hardik any fee for the first three years in his academy.
4. Hardik’s teammates call him “Rockstar”. Sir Jadeja was given the same nickname by his team.
5. Irfan Pathan and Yusuf Pathan are two of his close friends.
6. People often call him ‘west Indian guy from Baroda’ because of his features and characteristics.
7. In 2015, John Wright saw potential in his skills and took him on the Mumbai Indians IPL team.
8. Hardik failed to clear 9th standard. Hence, he left studies to focus on cricket.
9. Initially, Hardik was a leg spinner but with the help of Kiran More he became a medium pacer.
10. He is famous for his aggression on the field.
11. In the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy against Delhi, Pandya smashed 39 runs in an over.
The cricket world better watch out! Another star is born!