Dilip Vengsarkar stated that while it is handy to have a wicketkeeper who can score, one should not have a fixed idea about certain things. The role of a wicketkeeper in the game of cricket has evolved drastically in the last two decades.
Prior to the Adam Gilchrist and MS Dhoni eras, which redefined wicketkeepers as all-rounders, the world had seen specialist keepers in the names of Ian Healy, Syed Kirmani, Moin Khan, and Jeff Dujon, among others. They found a place in the team mainly because of their glovework.
Dilip Vengsarkar: One Can’t Have A Fixed Mind And Say Keeping Comes First
However, for a modern-day wicketkeeper, his batting skills matter as much as his prowess behind the stumps. If a team has to choose between a pure wicketkeeper and a wicketkeeper-batsman, they prefer the latter as that player adds depth to the side and brings in more balance. A fitting example in today’s world being Wriddhiman Saha and Rishabh Pant.
Former India captain, Dilip Vengsarkar is of the same opinion. While speaking to Cricket Next, the Indian batting stalwart Dilip Vengsarkar stated that while it is handy to have a wicketkeeper who can score, one should not have a fixed idea about certain things.
“It depends according to the situation. You cannot have a fixed idea about certain things. The wicketkeeper is a very important position in the team. Besides effecting stumpings and run-outs, if he is batting well, why not? If you have someone like Rishabh Pant, who can change the complexion of the match with his batting also, that is a huge advantage for the Indian team.
“You cannot have a fixed mind and say wicket-keeping comes first. If you are improving as a wicket-keeper, why not? Same thing happened with Mahendra Singh Dhoni. He kept improving,” said Dilip Vengsarkar.
India’s swashbuckling player Rishabh Pant has grown at a meteoric rate to cement his place permanently in the team. He was heavily criticized for his glovework until a few months ago but ever since India’s tour of Australia Down Under, he improved massively in both departments. He has replaced Wriddhiman Saha who lost his place due to uninspiring returns with the bat.
Dilip Vengsarkar, who scored 10,000 runs for India, opines that a team cannot have a staunch theory on the wicket-keeper these days and needs to be flexible according to conditions and situations.
Rishabh Pant Along With Indian Team Members Will Depart For England On June 2
Rishabh Pant, along with the Virat Kohli-led Indian team, will depart for the UK on June 2. They will first play the World Test Championship (WTC) final against New Zealand between June 18 and 22 in Southampton. After that, they will lock horns with the host country England in a five-match Test series starting August.
Rishabh Pant scored 274 runs at an average of 68.50 in five innings for India against Australia. The keeper continued his form against England where he hit 270 runs at an average of 54.00. He had led India to victory at Brisbane and then his scintillating hundred against England at Motera impressed everyone. He scored 91,11, unbeaten 58, 8, and 101 in the 5 innings against England.
Rishabh Pant captained for the first time in IPL 2021. Delhi Capitals had an impressive run under the young wicketkeeper-batsman and was the table-toppers with six wins from eight matches before IPL 2021 was postponed. In fact, the 36-year-old Wriddhiman Saha was magnanimous enough to concede that his almost certain successor Rishabh Pant merits the place in the Test team.
India wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant has climbed to his career-best 6th ranking in the ICC Test rankings for batsmen. The southpaw had broken into the ten for the first time after hitting his maiden hundred on home soil in the last Test match against England in March.