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‘If the timing is perfect and my body is in good shape, I’ll give it a go,’ says Hardik Pandya of his future Test ambitions

The Indian squad is presently preparing for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, which is set to begin on February 9 in Nagpur. The Men in Blue just completed their bilateral series against New Zealand, beating the Kiwis 3-0 in the ODI series and 2-1 in the T20I series, and India’s stand-in T20I captain Hardik Pandya provided a significant update on his career and future in Test cricket.

Pandya successfully returned to the national squad after suffering a devastating injury during the T20 World Cup 2021. He established himself as an all-rounder and captain by leading the Gujarat Titans (GT) to their first-ever IPL victory in their inaugural season. Pandya has been given various leadership positions since his return, the most recent being his position as India’s ODI deputy captain.

“For now, I’m going to concentrate on white-ball cricket, which is crucial, and if the timing is right and my body is healthy, I’ll give (the long format) a shot,” the 29-year-old said after the third T20I against New Zealand concluded in Ahmedabad.

The all-rounder remarked that he is now focusing on giving his all to the duty and responsibility that the Indian management has set upon him. He added that he wanted to establish himself in this genre first since the World Cup is coming to India and he didn’t want to screw things up before the big event.

“I will return when I believe it is the perfect moment to play Test cricket,” he stated.

It should be noted that this is not the first time Pandya has avoided the topic of returning to Test cricket. Before, when he was named T20I skipper against Sri Lanka in January 2023, he skirted the same question from a reporter at a news conference in a mysterious way.

“When will I be seen wearing white? Let me focus entirely on blues first, and then I’ll consider whites “He had said.

Pandya last played for India in a Test match in 2018. He is highly regarded as an all-rounder and will almost certainly make a Test return. India will face Australia in four Tests as part of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy and their last series of the current World Test Championship cycle. India still has a chance to reach the World Test Championship final, therefore the forthcoming Matches will be crucial for the hosts.