Former Australian Chinaman, Brad Hogg has opened up on the wicketkeeping conundrum in team India and revealed as to who among KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant, and Wriddhiman Saha should keep wickets for the Indian team. KL Rahul-Rishabh Pant has become the talk of the town in recent times. Since MS Dhoni’s departure from the Indian team, the team has failed to find an effective replacement. Pant had been given numerous chances but he failed miserably. But, his concussion in the first ODI against Australia made way for Rahul and the Karnataka wicketkeeper-batsman has become a regular starter since then.
In the Test series against New Zealand, Rishabh Pant was prioritized over regular and veteran Indian Test wicketkeeper, Wriddhiman Saha. This came as much of a shocker not only to the Indian cricket fans but to some experts as well. Virat Kohli was heavily criticized for his faulty team selection policies that led to a devastating 2-0 loss by the hands of the Kiwis at their home.
Now, Brad Hogg has opined on the issue and opened up on as to who among the current three wicketkeepers should be the first choice for the India National Cricket Team.
Brad Hogg Opens Up On The Wicketkeeping Conundrum In Team India
In a video uploaded on his Youtube channel Hogg’s Vlog, former Australia allrounder Brad Hogg revealed why and whom he would pick as India keeper in Tests and in the limited-overs format.
“Let’s firstly look at who is the better keeper. We have to go to Saha first because he’s the best. Why? Because he stays low. When the ball comes, he doesn’t move till the last moment, he moves with soft hands, and he gives. Also, he’s got very nimble feet, where he’s quick at down leg side and to take those stumpings. He’s got the good reach, and quick hands to come back and take the stumpings. And when he’s up to the stumps, those quick catches off the edge, he generally takes most of them,” Brad Hogg said.
“KL Rahul has shown he can keep in the shorter formats with the opportunities he has got earlier in the year. Much like Saha, he is quick with the hands. But because of his height, he’s slightly slower down the leg side. Pant is a little more flat-footed. He’s got hard hands and he snatches more at the ball than the other two,” he further added.
“So who is the ideal player to keep wickets in all three formats? In Tests, I wouldn’t have KL Rahul keeping because he doesn’t do enough of it at first-class level. It would put pressure on his batting, I’d be too afraid that his batting will fall away because of the extra workload. So, you’ve got to go with either Saha or Pant,” Hogg said.
Brad Hogg Reveals Why He Would Pick Rishabh Pant Over Wriddhiman Saha
The former left-hander added that he would prefer Pant in Test cricket as the keeper choice because of his aggressive batting style.
“Pant’s batting is more explosive than Saha. If you look at India’s top order, their top five do the bulk of the world. What you need from your no. 7 is someone to come out and take the game on, and get as much runs as quickly as possible. It moves the game forward and gives the bowlers more time to take 20 wickets, which you need in a Test match. So, for me, even if Pant misses a few stumpings that Saha would get, he puts the team in a much better position than Saha to win the Test match with his bat,” he said.
Talking about shorter formats, Brad Hogg picked Rahul as his keeper choice for India.
“In white-ball formats, you would think with that aggressive in Pant, I would be going for him in ODIs and T20Is. I am not. Saha is not the man either, because he doesn’t have that strike rate, and he doesn’t find the boundaries as easier as Pant or Rahul. So, I am going to go with Rahul,” he said.
“If you compare stats of Rahul, Pant, the former is more aggressive in all three phases of ODIs. It’s the same story in all three formats of T20 cricket. Where Pant loses his way there is that he’s just over-aggressive, he gets too ahead of himself, he doesn’t get composure in those crucial situations, whereas Rahul is more mature,” he added.