"Rohit is trying to bring the best out of Hardik" - Aakash Chopra on Hardik Pandya's spell in India's 2024 T20 World Cup win vs Ireland

India v Ireland - ICC Men
Hardik Pandya (right) was India's highest wicket-taker against Ireland.

Aakash Chopra has noted that Rohit Sharma tried to extract the best from Hardik Pandya in India's 2024 T20 World Cup win against Ireland. The former India batter reckons the all-rounder's three-wicket haul will hold him in good stead.

Hardik returned figures of 3/27 in four overs as India bowled Ireland out for 96 after asking them to bat first in New York on Wednesday, June 5. The Men in Blue then chased the target down with eight wickets and 46 deliveries to spare to register a comprehensive win.

Reflecting on India's bowling in a video shared on his YouTube channel, Chopra praised Hardik for bowling a penetrative spell and Rohit for using him effectively.

"Hardik Pandya - now that is becoming a good story. We had discussed earlier that this could be a breakthrough World Cup for Hardik Pandya, especially if the conditions are like this. He is releasing the ball decently and getting a little sideways movement as well," he said (6:30).
"Picking up three wickets like that - just grows stronger and stronger in confidence that things are going good. The captain is ensuring that he bowls his entire four overs. Rohit Sharma is understanding that Hardik Pandya is his very important player. Rohit is trying to bring the best out of Hardik," the former India opener added.

Rohit introduced Hardik into the attack in the seventh over when Ireland were 26/2. The right-arm seamer dismissed Lorcan Tucker, Curtis Campher, and Mark Adair to put Paul Stirling and company further behind the eight ball.

"When the ball was swinging at the start, Arshdeep Singh had to hit the stumps" - Aakash Chopra

Arshdeep Singh castled Andrew Balbirnie for a 10-ball five.
Arshdeep Singh castled Andrew Balbirnie for a 10-ball five.

Speaking about the rest of the bowlers, Aakash Chopra noted that Arshdeep Singh was bound to pick up early wickets, considering the conditions, with Andrew Balbirnie helping the left-arm seamer's cause with his approach.

"The bowlers did what they had to do. It had to happen like that. When the ball was swinging at the start, Arshdeep Singh had to hit the stumps. I don't know what Andrew Balbirnie was doing. He was trying to play after moving away from the stumps. Mohammed Siraj started with the new ball and Jasprit Bumrah picked up wickets," he said (6:10).

The renowned commentator also appreciated Jasprit Bumrah for striking a couple of blows and Axar Patel for taking a fantastic return catch.

"Jasprit Bumrah picked up a wicket with a bouncer and then hit the stumps with a yorker. Axar Patel - what a catch he took after diving from behind the batter. It was very good. Overall, I have sympathy for Ireland. The conditions were difficult. To negotiate the Indian bowling level in these conditions and to score 150 runs was a very high mountain to climb," Chopra observed.

Apart from Hardik Pandya, Bumrah (2/6) and Arshdeep (2/35) were India's most successful bowlers. While Mohammed Siraj and Axar picked up a wicket apiece, Gareth Delany was run out.

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