Ian Chappell praised Pandya    AFP
Ian Chappell praised Pandya AFP

Since Kapil Dev s retirement, India have not found a proper pace-bowling all-rounder. But former Australia captain Ian Chappell believes that Hardik Pandya can be the ideal successor of Kapil, who led India to their first ever World Cup title in 1983. All in all, Kapil scored 9,031 runs and bagged 687 wickets across formats in international cricket. Karsan Ghavri: Do not compare MS Dhoni with Hardik Pandya

Pandya, in his 20-month career, has scored 833 runs and bagged 49 wickets. So far, Pandya has not disappointed India much, but if he manages to maintain the fitness level and consistency that Kapil had displayed, he may achieve what the former great had.

In his column for Hindustan Times, Chappell wrote, Hardik Pandya is potentially the pace bowling all-rounder India has craved since Kapil Dev retired. Pandya is a huge hit with the fans and was partly responsible for India dominating Australia in the recent ODI series. However, his biggest influence on the team could come in the Test arena.

A player like Pandya, who has the ability to bat in the top six and also bowl at 140 kph gives a Test side the flexibility that leads to success in all conditions. It affords India the opportunity to field a balanced attack of five bowlers no matter what the conditions.

He further added, Pandya not only has the skill to perform the role successfully but now that he s achieving consistency at international level, his confidence has soared. He also has the added attribute of being prepared to experiment and consequently his bowling is likely to be effective under a variety of conditions. All-rounders with those attributes have the ability to change the course of a game quickly and in doing so, inspire their team mates.