New Delhi: Virat Kohli and his boys were outplayed in all three departments of fielding, bowling and batting but it was Hardik Pandya who put up a fight by scoring the fastest half-century in the history of ICC tournaments finals. He even beat Australia great Adam Gilchrist's record who had scored fifty in 33 balls during the 1999 ICC Cricket World Cup.
In the end, Pakistan won the the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 at the Oval on Sunday, beating the Men in Blue by 180 runs. But Pandya's knock of 76 runs off 43 balls - including six sixes and four fours - earned him praises from all over the world.
Pandya, who displayed his nerves of steel in London, revealed that Indian batting legend Sachin Tendulkar makes him nervous. Virat Kohli, MS Dhoni, Yuvraj Singh are often seen trying to emulate the retired cricketer and Pandya is the latest to admit that he in awe of Tendulkar's genius.
The all-rounder shared his version of story on one of the episodes of What The Duck 2 for Viu app. Speaking to humourist Vikram Sathaye, Pandya said, "If you love cricket and don't worship Sachin, then you don't love cricket. My moment in seventh heaven was when everyone from the Mumbai Indians met for a get-to-gether and it was my first time, back then. So I was busy eating when suddenly someone taps on my shoulder and turn around to see Sachin standing there saying hi to me. I got so nervous that I just dropped my plate instantly. Later on, Sachin said that if you maintain the form you will start playing for the Indian team within a year or so as luck would have it, within 5 months I was playing for the Indian team."
Soon, Pandya was seen donning India colors. In 12 ODIs he has accumulated 265 runs and 13 wickets. In 19 T20Is he has scored 100 runs and 15 wickets.
Pandya's knock of 76 against Pakistan in a losing cause was his best so far.