India all-rounder Hardik Pandya smashed 105 runs from just 39 balls in his second outing after recovering from a lower back surgery on Wednesday and Natasa Stankovic, his fiancée was delighted with this performance referring him as “Kung Fu Pandya” on Instagram. Pandya who hasn’t played since September 2019, produced a fascinating innings for the Reliance 1 team in the DY Patil T20 Cup at the Reliance Corporate Park in Ghansoli.
The Baroda all-rounder hit 10 maximums en route to a superb century in his second game after injury; taking his side to a massive 252/5 in 20 overs. With a strike-rate of 269.2 he showed glimpses of his former self against CAG in this Group C fixture; but the story didn’t end there. Pandya then went on to pick a five-for, as it seems that the extra hours in gym and rehab has finally paid off for the 26-year-old.
Meanwhile, his fiancée the well-known model and dancer Natasa Stankovic lauded his antics through social media by sharing a photo of Hardik on her Instagram story captioning, “37-ball hundred for Hardik ‘Kung Fu’ Pandya. The deadly hitter is back at work.” She even added a roaring lion and ‘my heart is full’ sticker on her post.
The celebrity-couple got engaged on New Year’s Day this year after reportedly dating for a while. Stankovic was spotted with him during his recovery days and will surely cheer for him during the upcoming IPL season.
Pandya on the other hand, was supposed to be included in the Indian squad for the recently concluded New Zealand series. However, the selectors chose not to pick him at the last minute, allowing him to prepare for the IPL through the T20 Cup tournament in Navi Mumbai.
Pandya is expected to return to the national team against South Africa in a three-match ODI series, beginning March 12 onwards and will play a vital role in Mumbai Indians’ IPL campaign thereafter.
Mumbai Indians will host MS Dhoni’s Chennai Super Kings in the opening fixture of IPL 2020 on March 29 at the Wankhede Stadium.
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