India’s middle-order batsman Manish Pandey is going through a long slump in International cricket. His most celebrated knock came against Australia back in 2016, when he scored an unbeaten 104 chasing a mammoth 331, helping India to avoid a whitewash. It’s been a long since he has played an innings of substance like that in India colors.
Manish has represented India in 28 ODIs scoring 555 runs at an average of 34.68. He has an impressive career average of 44.31 in T20Is, scoring 709 runs in 39 matches. Though his overall stats in International cricket are decent, the middle-order batsman hasn’t had much success lately. A career that started on a promising note, has lost its way too soon.
Manish Pandey's expression after his dismissal was of a cricketers who feels that this could be the last time he is playing for India.
Given that Iyer will be coming back, SKY's emergence & no ODI scheduled for 6-7 months, this might just be the end of the road for him! ☹️☹️
— Bubba Gump Shrimp Company (@wildcardgyan) July 23, 2021
Manish isn’t a regular in the Indian limited-overs squad. But as the senior players are in England for a Test series, Manish Pandey’s international career got a second life. Unfortunately, he hasn’t been able to make a mark.
In the ongoing limited-overs series, Manish averages 24.67 in three matches. He was a victim of an unfortunate dismissal on 37 in the second ODI when a straight drive off Suryakumar Yadav’s bat resulted in Manish getting run-out. But that was just one innings, in the other two matches too he hasn’t done any good. His stats in the ODI series against Sri Lanka so far: 26,37, 11.
Luck or Inconsistency hampering Manish Pandey’s career?
Manish averages 48.25 in the five matches played in the Indian Premier League (IPL)2021 before it was suspended. But his strike has been a cause of concern. The Sunrisers Hyderabad batsman has scored 193 runs at a strike rate of 123.71. Even in the last IPL season, Manish’s strike rate was 127.62. For somebody, who bats in the middle-order, the strike rate is a serious worry.
It could be argued that even luck hasn’t been on Manish’s side. He had to wait to make his International debut for a lengthy period of time and injuries too haven’t helped. And the worse is that has been shuffled in the batting order too often for anybody’s liking.
In the meantime, the other Indian middle-orders, such as the likes of Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Shreyas Iyer have done exceedingly well. In a short international career so far, Suryakumar Yadav has proved himself to be a match-winner. He averages 62 in ODIs and 44.5 in T20Is and most importantly is in form. Whereas the injured Shreyas Iyer averages 42.79 in ODI cricket for India at the moment.
With the T20 World Cup around the corner and looking at the performances of his contemporaries, it would not be wrong to say that the time is ticking for Manish Pandey to revive his international career.