Two of the biggest talking points around Indian cricket this year has been- one, the form of Rishabh Pant and the absence of Mahendra Singh Dhoni from the set-up since the 2019 World Cup. Not long ago, Pant was hailed as the next best thing in Indian cricket after he had a breakout first year in Test cricket where he became the first Indian wicketkeeper to score tons in both England and Australia.
However, the combination of inconsistent returns with the bat coupled by outrageous shot-selection at times and his mediocre wicketkeeping skills has meant, the southpaw has come under intense scrutiny from both fans as well as former cricketers.
Fans have been calling for Pant’s removal in favour of Sanju Samson while former cricketers too have urged the southpaw to make use of the opportunities that he has been getting thus far. However, former England stalwart Kevin Pietersen feels that the Pant- if managed well- could become an absolute superstar in the future.
“I observed him very closely during the IPL and he kept making the same mistake and when you do that continuously then pundits, experts and people who have played the game want to criticize you because you should be learning from your mistakes,” Pietersen said on Star Sports as quoted by Times Now.
“But I never realized he’s 21 (22), I thought he was 24 or 25 because by that age you have matured in your game and at the age of 27-30 is when you are playing your best sport,” he added.
Kevin Pietersen feels that Rishabh Pant has a long way to go
Pietersen feels that even though Pant is making a plethora of mistakes, he is just 22 and has a long way to go, he would be a superstar in the future, something he really hopes to see.
“If you look at all the mistakes he has made and the position he is in, with the team and Virat backing him and with MS out at the moment, he does have a long way to go. He will be looked upon on his performance and he is 21 (22), so will he be able to buy the time to be an absolute superstar in Indian cricket is what we need to see, and I think he actually can,” said the charismatic former English batsman.
Pant had a decent outing against the West Indies in the second fame where he scored an unbeaten 22-ball 33 to help India post a competitive total of 170. However, his innings went in vain as the visitors, thanks to some imperious hitting and India’s shoddy fielding, romped home in the penultimate over to enforce a series decider.
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