Aakash Chopra, the former Indian opener and current commentator has opined that dashing wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant reminds one of Australian Adam Gilchrist because of his game-changing abilities.
Chopra made the above observation while discussing about the batsman’s enterprising knock against Australia A in the 2nd practice match in a video shared on his YouTube channel.
Aakash Chopra: Rishabh Pant Reminds One Of Adam Gilchrist
Aakash Chopra named Rishabh Pant as his player of the day, and said that the southpaw overtook another centurion Hanuma Vihari to the post. He pointed out that the wicketkeeper-batsman demolished the Australia A attack single-handed on the second day of the three-day encounter.
“The player of the day, although I wanted to keep Hanuma Vihari, but I have changed it to Rishabh Pant. Because if you destroy the opposition like this at the end. This is the quality that this guy has.”
The reputed commentator even compared Rishabh Pant to legendary Australian wicket-keeper Adam Gilchrist, although he acknowledged the fact that this is just the start of Rishabh Pant’s career.
“He is like the Adam Gilchrist. Obviously Adam Gilchrist has achieved a lot but Rishabh Pant’s story has just started. But when he plays, he reminds you of him, it feels like he can reach close to him.”
Aakash Chopra reasoned the Delhi Capitals batsman who didn’t have a good IPL 2020 can alter the state of the game in a single session and can score runs equally quickly in tests and limited overs.
“Because if he comes in the lower order and changes the game in a single session, that ability is there in Rishabh Pant.”
Aakash Chopra highlighted that Rishabh Pant would have been under intense pressure when he came to bat after scoring only 5 in first innings.
“He was under a lot of pressure, he had not scored in the last innings and this was his last chance. He had not even played the first warm-up match.”
The southpaw had not played the first practice match and was dismissed cheaply in the first innings of this encounter in India A’s pathetic batting performance as they were reduced to 123/9 before being dismissed for 194 after tail-ender Jasprit Bumrah scored an unbeaten 55.
Aakash Chopra: Question Is Whether India Will Stick With Rishabh Pant Or Go To Wriddhiman Saha
The former KKR player pointed out that Rishabh Pant gave enough ample proof of his destructive abilities while accelerating to his century in the last session of play in 2nd practice match at Sydney.
“The last 30 to 45 minutes of the final session was completely dominated by Rishabh Pant. He made everyone aware of his amazing capabilities. The question was whether he will even attempt to score a hundred but he did that as well.”
The 43-year-old commentator particularly praised Rishabh Pant’s ability to hit the towering sixes into the stands as he hit 6 sixes in his entertaining innings.
“He converts the seats in the stadium into fielders and made the fielders as spectators. The destructive Rishabh Pant is back.”
Aakash Chopra concluded by observing that it would be an extremely tough call for the team management as they will be in a dilemma to choose between one of Rishabh Pant and Wriddhiman Saha as the wicket-keeper for the first Test against Australia.
“The big question will be if India will stick with him or go to Wriddhiman Saha. But one thing is for sure, with this hundred, whether you play him or not, he will be an overhauling thought and you can’t really discard him. He has been that good.”
The dashing left-handed wicket-keeper batsman scored only 5 runs in the first innings but followed it up by scoring an unbeaten 103 off only 73 balls with 9 fours and 6 sixes making up for the poor performance in first innings.
Wriddhiman Saha scored a duck off 22 balls in the first innings in the ongoing second practice match that saw India bundled for a paltry 194.
But he bailed out India A by scoring an unbeaten 54 off 100 balls with 7 fours when needed most against Australia A as India A were reduced to 129/7 in second innings in the first practice match.
But his two ducks and a fifty makes it an interesting toss-up between him and Rishabh Pant who scored a ton to feature in playing XI for the first test.