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“You Can Watch Him Go”: Former India Coach On Hardik Pandya’s ODI Future After 2023 World Cup

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Ever since Ben Stokes has retired from ODIs, a debate has raged about the international cricket schedule and whether it is too much for players to survive in all three formats. Stokes had said in his statement that it is impossible for him to play in all three formats right now. Now, former Team India head coach Ravi Shastri has weighed in on the debate, saying players will start choosing which formats they want to play, and cited the example of India all-rounder Hardik Pandya.

“The 50-over format can be pushed back but it can survive even if you focus only on the World Cup. From the ICC point of view, the World Cup should be given paramount importance, be it the T20 World Cup. Be it or a 50-over World Cup, the bucks have to go up. Test cricket will always be there because it’s important to the game. You have players already choosing which formats they want to play. Take Hardik Pandya. He Wants to play T20 cricket and that is very clear in his mind that ‘I don’t want to play anything else,’ Shastri told Sky Sports on Friday.

“He will play 50-over cricket because there is a World Cup in India next year. After that, you can see him go through that too. You will see the same thing happen to other players, they start picking formats, their He has every right,” he said.

IPL 2023 is expected to have a two-and-a-half-month window, and with South Africa pulling out of Australia’s ODIs due to the inaugural season of their T290 league, a debate has erupted over franchise cricket versus international cricket.

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Talking about the current cricket schedule, Shastri said: “The main issue that we have to see now is the reality, what is happening right now. There are things that are being said by former players, someone like me, 5 -10 years ago, it’s already happening. If you’re not going to look at reality, it’s going to give you the biggest knockout punch ever. It’s not just administrators who run the world game, but The administrations that run different boards around the world have got to see the reality, what is the quantity and demand of cricket, let’s go with the economics of the game.”

“It’s franchise cricket ruling the roost and it’s going to rule the roost. So don’t wait for it to happen, then you get on your high horse and ask what should we do? It’s too late, it’s gonna happen.” Yes, there’s going to be franchise cricket that’s going to rule the world. Then how do you have international cricket? You’ve got to cut down on volumes, you’ve got to cut down on bilateral cricket, and go in that direction. You will never stop different players from going and playing for different franchises.”

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