Naman Ojha, former India wicket-keeper, and domestic stalwart backed Rishabh Pant to become India’s best wicket-keeper batsman in the upcoming year.
Rishabh Pant is showing his prowess with the bat recently for the Indian Test team. After his outstanding efforts against Australia in their own backyard, the swashbuckling left-hander has continued his prolific run with the willow against England in the ongoing 4 match Test series at home. Rishabh Pant has been brilliant with the bat besides notable improvement in his glovework which often comes under the scanner.
Naman Ojha: Rishabh Pant Will Improve Day By Day
However, in the recently-concluded second Test against England in Chennai which India won by 317 runs, Rishabh Pant was sublime behind the wickets too and took some stunning catches. He also affected a number of crucial stumpings and looked solid on a turning track at the Chepauk.
Former India wicket-keeper batsman and domestic stalwart Naman Ojha recently lavished praise on Rishabh Pant and backed him to become India’s best wicket-keeper in the next year.
Naman Ojha, who recently retired from all forms of cricket, said Rishabh Pant is a tremendous batsman and is only going to improve with time.
“Rishabh (Pant) will improve day-by-day. If he is keeping in Test matches, definitely he will improve in one-dayers and T20Is. It is very tough to keep in a Test match. Rishabh is also a tremendous batsman. I am sure that he will improve and, in the next one year, he will become the best keeper,” Ojha said in an interview with Sportskeeda.
Rishabh Pant had lost his spot in India’s limited-overs sides last year. He was replaced by KL Rahul, who emerged as the first-choice keeper-batsman in both ODIs and T20Is. He was also overlooked in the first Test against Australia Down Under where Wriddhiman Saha was selected before making a roaring comeback. He has managed to hold on to his place on the Test side and has produced a string of impressive performances.
Rishabh Pant effected two jaw-dropping stumpings that of Dan Lawrence and Moeen Ali to help India wrap up the second Test against England on the fourth day winning by 317 runs. The stumpings were in addition to his brilliant one-handed catches to his left to dismiss Ollie Pope and Jack Leach in the first innings. In addition, he scored a crucial 58 not out in the first innings.
Rishabh Pant scored 274 runs in 3 Tests in Australia averaging 68.5. He scored 91,11, unbeaten 58, and 8 in the 4 innings against England amassing 168 runs in 4 innings.
Naman Ojha Praised KL Rahul Too For Improvement As Keeper And Good Fitness
Rishabh Pant has marked his comeback in the T20I side for the upcoming 5-match England series and is likely to be handed over the gloves by KL Rahul. Rishabh Pant has so far played 18 Test, 16 ODIs, and 28 T20Is for India, amassing 1256, 374, and 410 runs in the three formats respectively.
Naman Ojha also praised KL Rahul for his keeping and said the right-hander has also improved significantly behind the stumps. He reckoned both Rishabh Pant and KL Rahul ride on the confidence from their batting and will keep improving as wicket-keepers.
“KL Rahul has improved as a wicketkeeper. His fitness is very good. Fitness is very important in wicketkeeping. He is doing it from the last year or so, keeping in one-dayers and T20s. He is a match-winner with the bat. He and Rishabh will improve, definitely. Batting gives them confidence. When they score runs, they are very much relaxed behind the stumps. That is more important for a wicketkeeper,” said Ojha.
The 37-year-old keeper Naman Ojha from Madhya Pradesh, who holds a distinctive record for the most dismissals by a wicketkeeper in the Ranji Trophy, featured in one Test, one ODI, and two T20 Internationals for India.
KL Rahul, who last played in Tests in the West Indies tour in August 2019 has amassed 2006 runs in 36 Tests averaging 34.59. KL Rahul scored 93 runs in 3 ODIs and 81 runs in 3 T20Is against Australia. KL Rahul was also the Orange Cap winner by virtue of being the highest run-getter in the IPL 2020 held at UAE, where he amassed 670 runs at an average of 55.83.