back icon


Hardik Pandya is a big man for a big moment: AB de Villiers

Last updated on 04 Jul 2024 | 10:21 AM
Google News IconFollow Us
Hardik Pandya is a big man for a big moment: AB de Villiers

AB de Villiers also said that Pandya made everyone proud out there in the most dramatic of fashions

Ahead of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024, Hardik Pandya made a switch from Gujarat Titans to Mumbai Indians, a move that made his life hell. The all-rounder was scrutinized to the extreme while donning the Mumbai jersey and was booed and jeered everywhere he went after he replaced crowd-favourite Rohit Sharma as the captain. 

While his IPL 2024 was certainly far away from good, Pandya made a swift comeback in the Indian colours, playing a vital role for the national team. The all-rounder amassed 144 runs in the competition, averaging 48 while still striking at 151.7, including scoring a vital half-century against Bangladesh in the Super 8s. 

But his biggest contribution in the tournament was with the ball, with 11 wickets. The all-rounder saved his best for last, finishing with figures of 3/20 against South Africa in Barbados, helping India snatch a narrow seven-run victory in the final.

Off the first ball of his second over, Hardik removed the dangerous Heinrich Klaasen before removing David Miller to seal the encounter. Former South African batter AB de Villiers was in awe of Pandya’s ability to stand out in the big moments. 

"What stands out for me are the big moments. A guy like Hardik Pandya who's been through a roller-coaster himself with Mumbai Indians – moving from Gujarat to Mumbai – and all the criticism he coped with, getting the ball from the captain in the final of the T20 World Cup. That was his moment to go like, 'You know what… all Indian fans out there, this is what I am about as a cricket player'," De Villiers said on his YouTube channel.

In the aftermath of the clash, the 30-year-old went down on the ground, and his eyes were filled with tears. While talking about his performance, de Villiers insisted that Hardik is the ‘big man for a big moment’. He didn’t stop there, calling out the Mumbai Indians fans while opining that his performance would have secured a spot in their hearts. 

"He made everyone proud out there. Even though I did not want him to succeed like that, I look back and have a lot of respect for that. He is a big man for a big moment and that's exactly the way he played. To all you Mumbai Indians fans out there who doubted him, I'm pretty sure he has secured a spot in your hearts for the future."

If you’ve not downloaded the app yet, you’re missing out — big time. Play Fantasy on NOW! Download the App here.

Related Article