Virender Sehwag questions Rishabh Pant’s absence: The legendary opening batsman feels the wicket-keeper batsman should have played more T20Is recently.
Former India opening batsman Virender Sehwag has questioned the absence of wicket-keeper batsman Rishabh Pant from India’s playing XI on the ongoing tour of New Zealand.
From being an all format wicket-keeper batsman for India last year, Pant now finds himself in the squad but out of the playing XI across formats.
While a fit Wriddhiman Saha resumed wicket-keeping duties in India’s recently concluded home season, Lokesh Rahul scoring heavily in white-ball formats has made him an automatic choice in both ODIs and T20Is.
What has mostly not gone down well with people rooting for Pant is him not even getting a chance as a specialist batsman in the T20I series against New Zealand.
Batsman Manish Pandey, who played the last ODI against Australia in Bengaluru ahead of Pant, has continued to do the same in T20Is against New Zealand. Having scored a gritty half-century in the last match in Wellington, Pandey has justified the move successfully.
Having gained an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match series, India decided to give an opportunity to Sanju Samson ahead of Pant. It is worth mentioning that Samson had warmed the bench when Pant was being played as a specialist keeper.
Virender Sehwag questions Rishabh Pant’s absence
Speaking during a talk show on Cricbuzz, Sehwag laid emphasis on giving more opportunities to Pant who has scored 410 runs in 28 T20Is at an average of 20.50 and a strike rate of 121.66.
“Rishabh Pant has been left out how will he score runs? If you bench Sachin Tendulkar also, he won’t be able to score runs. If you feel he is a match-winner, why don’t you play him? Because he is not consistent?
How can you not play Pant in T20 cricket 🤦♂️ #NZvIND
— Raunak Kapoor (@RaunakRK) January 24, 2020
“During our time, captain used to go and talk with the player [in question]. Now I don’t know if Virat Kohli does the same or not. I am not part of the team setup. But people say that when Rohit Sharma went to Asia Cup as captain, he used to talk to all the players,” Sehwag was quoted as saying.