IPL 2022: Hardik Pandya delivers power-pact monologue ahead of Gujarat Titans' debut
Gujarat Titans (GT) will face Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) in their opening clash at Mumbai's Wankhede Stadium on Monday.
The fourth match of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022 season will be a historic one as two new franchises, Gujarat Titans (GT) and Lucknow Super Giants (LSG), will make their debut in the showpiece T20 league.
The Gujarat-based team, who will play their home games at Ahmedabad's iconic Narendra Modi Stadium, will be led by all-rounder Hardik Pandya. The 15th edition of the IPL will be the first time Pandya will not feature in the Mumbai Indians (MI) squad in his career.
Ahead of their crucial opening clash against LSG, Hardik Pandya delivered a power-pact monologue for the Gujarat Titans team and fans as he spoke about his aspiration to emulate the likes of legendary MS Dhoni and Sachin Tendulkar.
In a video shared by GT on their official Twitter account, Pandya said, "Ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain speaking, captain Hardik Pandya. The feel is new, but the field is also new. But listen, I am not going to tell you where I came from, you probably know that. I will tell you where I am taking you to. It's towards that peak called 'sporting success'."
"That sweet lofty spot, where grit lives with the grind, labour leads to luck. It is a range that my brother (MS Dhoni) has scaled, and I have made no attempts to hide that I want to emulate him. It's a place that my hero (Sachin Tendulkar) has owned and told me stories of how he got there," added the Gujarat Titans' captain.
Recalling the experience of facing a ban due to remarks made on a TV show and a back injury, Pandya claimed his team would face multiple challenges on their journey but assured his team that he knew how to overcome such obstacles.
"It is a journey which will pit me sometimes against my sibling, my soulmate and many of my closest friends. And like every flight, this too may have turbulence. But hey, look at me. If I have survived being in a national storm, a ban, a gruelling back injury and more, I know what it takes," the Gujarat Titans skipper concluded.
IPL 2022 expanded from eight to ten teams, with the Gujarat franchise being purchased by CVC Capitals for Rs. 5625 crores and Lucknow Super Giants by Sanjiv Goenka's RPSG group for a whopping Rs. 7090 crores.