New Delhi: Gujarat Titans head coach Ashish Nehra said the team will be more than happy to have their captain Hardik Pandya as a batter for the IPL 2022, considering the back injury issues he has been dealing with over the last few months.

Nehra said it will be great to have Hardik — who was drafted by Titans as their skipper for Rs 15 crore — roll his arm over, but “if he is only batting fit, I will be happy with Hardik Pandya”.

“If he (Hardik) bowls, it’s great. But to be very honest, we are more than happy to have Hardik Pandya as a pure batsman. I don’t see any T20 team in the world, not talking just about the IPL, where Hardik doesn’t fit as a batsman. Whatever number he bats, be it 4 or 5 or 6,” Nehra told India Today.

“Yes, there is always speculation around his bowling. If he can bowl for Gujarat Titans, that will be great. But yes, if he is only batting fit, I will be happy with Hardik Pandya,” he added.

The 28-year-old player has not played competitive cricket since the ICC T20 World Cup last year. Even before that, questions were raised over his fitness as the former Mumbai Indians all-rounder hadn’t bowled for MI in IPl 2021 and bowled just 4 overs for India at the T20 World Cup.