Hardik Pandya has been a massive presence in Mumbai’s lower middle-order in the Indian T20 League since making his debut in the 2015 season. A hard-hitting fast bowling all-rounder is a rarity in India and Hardik milked the opportunity to reap success. Here are three unforgettable knocks from the Mumbai champion in the competition.

35* vs Pune - 2017

The value of a lower middle-order batsman in T20 cricket does not always arise from big scores. A high impact knock goes a long way in helping the team and it is in this role that Hardik Pandya has thrived for Mumbai.

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In 2017, he blasted Pune in the final over to give his side a fighting chance after a below-par 19 overs with the bat. Pandya struck Ashok Dinda for 28 runs in the last over of the innings, hitting four sixes and a four in five balls before being dismissed. Pandya's 35 came off just 15 balls and took Mumbai to 184 from 154/7 in 19 overs. They, however, went on to lose the game. 

91 vs Kolkata - 2019

2019 was Pandya's year with the bat as he tormented sides with his big-hitting against pace and spin alike. He was particularly brutal on the spinners and Kolkata coped a large brunt of his incredible skills when he smashed 91 off just 34 balls against them last season. Chasing a massive 233 for a win after an Andre Russell special, Hardik Pandya matched the Windies all-rounder shot for shot. He walked in at 58/4 and blasted Sunil Narine and Piyush Chawla around to race to a 17-ball half-century. He went on to make 41 in the next 17 balls but was dismissed in the 18th over and Mumbai failed to gun down the target. 

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61* vs Kolkata - 2015

In his debut season in 2015, Hardik Pandya was seen as a slogger who could play brilliant cameos from down the order. His true batting abilities hadn't yet unfolded before the world but in this game against Kolkata, we were treated to a Hardik special. He walked in at the fall of Rohit Sharma's wicket at 79/4 in the 12th over and smashed 61 in 31 balls with two sixes and eight fours. Mumbai made 171 powered by Hardik's knock and went on to win by 5 runs as the all-rounder won the Man of the Match award. 

Feature image courtesy: AFP / Manjunath Kiran