Team India superstar Hardik Pandya angered fans on the internet after he made a controversial statement on statistics in cricket.


Hardik Pandya's remarks came during an interview with Star Sports, wherein he was asked to recall his rise in cricket. 


He also spoke about his performances in the Indian Premier League (IPL).


When the broadcaster was showing him his best knocks in the elite T20 competition, Hardik Pandya underlined: “I don't believe in 50s or 100s. Stats are just numbers; it's a waste of time,” he said.


However, his comments caused a commotion on social media, with netizens labeling him “overhyped” and a “loudmouth”.

Earlier, Team India captain Rohit Sharma's supporters mercilessly trolled Hardik Pandya after the two cricketers attended the pre-wedding bash of Anant Ambani and Radhika Merchant in Jamnagar earlier this week. 


For starters, Anant Ambani is the youngest son of Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani, the chairman of Reliance Industries.


The Reliance Group is a conglomerate of businesses across various sectors, including petrochemicals, telecom, retail, entertainment, textiles, mass media, energy, natural gas, and sports. It owns the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise – Mumbai Indians (MI). 


Recently, the management of the Mumbai Indians anointed Hardik Pandya as the skipper of the IPL side in place of Rohit Sharma.


In this background, netizens posted memes, and through them, they took potshots at Hardik Pandya.


Hardik Pandya recently returned to competitive cricket, participating in the DY Patil T20 tournament after spending nearly four months on the sidelines. 


After participating in the first few matches of the ODI World Cup last October, Hardik Pandya injured his ankle in a game against Bangladesh, forcing him out of the quadrennial event.  


The all-rounder will continue to build momentum ahead of the start of the Indian Premier League (IPL), where he will lead former champions Mumbai Indians in the competition later this month.


Hardik Pandya played for Mumbai Indians for seven consecutive seasons starting in 2015 before parting ways to join Gujarat Titans during the 2022 season.


During his seven-year sojourn with Mumbai Indians, the Team India all-rounder remained a vital cog in the then Rohit Sharma-led team's title-winning runs in 2015, 2017, 2019, and 2020.


Hardik Pandya's two-year term as the leader of the Gujarat Titans (GT) was highly successful as the Gujarat-born cricketer guided them to the IPL title in their maiden season in 2022.


In the following season, he guided the Ahmedabad-based team to the final but lost to MS Dhoni's Chennai Super Kings in the title clash.


Meanwhile, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and Hardik Pandya were slammed on social media after the former announced the list of cricketers who were handed central contracts for the 2023-24 season. Amid swirling speculation over the fate of wicketkeeper-batter Ishan Kishan and injury-prone top-order player Shreyas Iyer, the BCCI confirmed that the duo was not included in the cricket body's annual contracts.


Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer created a lot of buzz in recent weeks, largely for the wrong reasons, after the two players decided against the team management and the BCCI's decision to play domestic cricket when they are not employed with the national side.


However, the two batters continuously ignored head coach Rahul Dravid and captain Rohit Sharma's dictate, missing a string of Ranji Trophy games, irking the national selection committee led by former India fast bowler Ajit Agarkar.


In particular, Rohit Sharma was quite categorical about the situation, underlining that young cricketers must understand the essence of domestic cricket and should follow the advice given to them by the national selectors and think tank. 


He went on to warn them, emphasizing that only players who were willing to work hard would be picked to represent India in international matches. But players not willing to do so would not be considered for selection. 


In this context, the BCCI chose not to offer contracts to both Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan. 


“Please note that Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan were not considered for the annual contracts in this round of recommendations,” a statement from the Indian Cricket Board read.


The BCCI's statement, however, didn't go well with the supporters of Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan.


Their admirers criticized the board over its stand on Hardik Pandya, who no longer plays red-ball domestic cricket. Similarly, Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan have missed four-day fixtures of the Ranji Trophy.


But unlike Hardik Pandya, who was included in the list of centrally-contracted players, Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan missed out. 


This led the fans to describe Hardik Pandya as “selfish”. 


Nonetheless, a BCCI official explained that Hardik Pandya's case was different from that of Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer's.


“We have had discussions with Pandya, who has been told to play domestic white-ball tournaments when he is available. At this stage, according to the assessment of the BCCI's medical team, he is not in a position to bowl in red-ball tournaments. So playing Ranji Trophy is out of the equation for Pandya. But he has to play other white-ball tournaments if there are no India commitments. If not, he will miss out on a contract,” a BCCI official told an Indian media outlet.