After Mohammad Kaif blamed India’s team management for mishandling Rishabh Pant, another former Indian cricketer Kirti Azad believes that Pant’s talent is getting wasted. The youngster got the place in the national team as a wicketkeeper-batsman after MS Dhoni made himself unavailable for international cricket.
Rishabh Pant hogged the eyes of selectors after his impressive performance in domestic cricket and IPL. Playing for Delhi Capitals, he was the power-hitter and scored heavily for them. The middle-order batsman amassed 684 runs and 488 runs in 2018 and 2019 IPL season respectively. However, he has failed to replicate the same performance in international cricket.
In 2018, he made the debut in the Test series against England and went on to score his maiden century. He was also a significant contributor in the historic Test series win in Australian soil last year. But his form dipped after he replaced former Indian cricketer, MS Dhoni, in the team. He was heavily under scrutiny for his poor wicketkeeping.
Earlier this year, Rishabh Pant was dropped from the playing XI in the T20I series against New Zealand. KL Rahul took over his role and impressed everyone with his glove. So, it will be hard for Pant to make a comeback in white-ball cricket.
I feel sorry for Rishabh Pant: Kirti Azad
Kirti Azad believes Rishabh Pant can be a better batsman than a wicketkeeper. He has advised the youngster to keep calm and stay longer in the field.
As Pant is an attacking batsman, Azad opined that the Delhi cricketer needs to learn the art to save his wicket rather than hitting big shots. He also feels sorry for the 22-year-old because according to Azad, his great talent is getting wasted
“He is very impulsive. I think he can turn out to be a very good batsman than keeper. And, if he keeps his head cool, the question is that he wants to hit every ball, you are not playing T20 cricket when you are playing a 50-overs game or a Test match,” Azad told Sportskeeda in an interview.
“You have to learn to stay at the wicket. If you stay at the wicket, the runs are going to come to you. Some good ball takes your wicket, I can understand, but if you hit a big shot and get out, which has happened most of the times as far as Rishabh Pant is concerned, I feel sorry because he is a great talent getting wasted,” he added.
Rishabh Pant has, so far, played 13 Tests, 16 ODIs and 28 ODIs, scoring 814, 374 and 410 runs respectively.