Hardik Pandya became a proud receiver of the Test cap number 289 from captain Virat Kohli as he was named in the starting lineup for India’s opening Test against Sri Lanka at Galle that began on Wednesday. Celebrating the moment, Pandya posted a picture in the morning while dressed in all whites with the caption, “What better to live moments which i often fantasized as a growing kid! The Paramount to represent India in whites. #livingthedream #SLvIND”.
Through the day, Pandya received congratulatory messages from former cricketers, current cricketers and those associated with the sport. Even though he didn’t make any appearance on the opening day which India dominated after winning the toss and opting the bat, Pandya replied to some of the messages.
Responding to his brother Krunal Pandya, who is in South Africa as part of the India A setup to play a tri-nation series, comprising the two and Afghanistan – following Australia A’s backing out amid the pay dispute, Hardik said, “Thanks my brother 🤗 rock it in South Africa ❤️ sending lots of love to you,”.
He also thanked Jassie Gill – a singer and actor of Punjabi origin for the good luck wish on debut and egging him to do well.
He acknowledged that it was an honour to play for India in the Test matches having made his ODI debut a year and a half ago and cementing his place in the short formats of the game. But now Pandya has a chance to do well and make a mark in the longest format of the game too.
At the end of the day’s play in Galle, India were in a dominant position at 399/3 following centuries by Shikhar Dhawan and Cheteshwar Pujara.