Saturday, June 10, 2023

‘Look what Adam Gilchrist did for Australia’: Gavaskar suggests bold change to tap Rishabh Pant’s talent in T20Is

Rishabh Pant continued his stellar form by scoring a century and half-century in the recently concluded fifth Test against England. The match came on the back of a normal run off the bat from Pant in the five-match T20I series against South Africa and the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022 before that. Pant scored his fifth Test century, scoring 146 off just 111 balls with a stunning counter attack that gave India the advantage in the first three days of the match. He then scored 57 runs in the second innings. This led to Pant’s career Test tally of 2123 runs at an average of 43.32.

This is in contrast to Pant’s numbers in white-ball cricket – he has scored just 715 runs in ODIs at an average of 32.50 and 741 runs at an average of 23.15 and an average strike rate of 123.91 in T20Is. He has yet to score a century in white ball cricket.

Read also | Shikhar Dhawan will captain India in West Indies ODIs, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah rested

Batting great Sunil Gavaskar said India would benefit from sending Pant as an opener in white-ball cricket, as opposed to the finisher role he has been given in his career so far.

“Not a bad choice at all. What did Adam Gilchrist do for Australia in white ball cricket. He used to bat at No. 6 or 7 in test cricket but in white ball cricket he was destructive. Maybe someone like Rishabh Pant could be there. Equally devastating, he will get more overs to play,” Gavaskar said on Sports Today.

“We’re talking about him as a finisher, but then he comes in there, starts slamming the ball and gets straight out. Here, he’ll know not to go bang with the first ball He will have some deliveries to get used to the pace and the pace. England will have a lot more momentum than even the white ball. It can really work in India’s favour,” he said.

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