Gautam Gambhir, Rishabh Pant
Gautam Gambhir, Rishabh Pant. (Photo: Twitter)

Rishabh Pant was unexpectedly left out of India’s playing XI for Sunday’s Asia Cup 2022 opener against Pakistan at the Dubai International Stadium.

Dinesh Karthik has been chosen over Pant by India for the intense match, according to Rohit, who won the toss and decided to send Pakistan in.

Former opener Gautam Gambhir expressed surprise at the selection and stated that he would choose Pant above Karthik in response to India’s Playing XI. Given that there isn’t much time left before the T20 World Cup, Gambhir stated that if this move is an experiment by India, he is not a supporter of it.

Rishabh Pant (Image Credits: Twitter)
Rishabh Pant (Image Credits: Twitter)

Rishabh Pant Has Been An X-Factor For India: Gautam Gambhir

“I won’t experiment from now on because how many games do we have… this Asia Cup? And then you’ve got what… five more games, six more games and then the World Cup. From now on, you want a settled Playing XI. Yes, you can have your backups as well but that is the way I would have wanted. It is a bit of a surprise because Rishabh Pant has been an X-factor,” Gambhir said on Star Sports.

Rishabh Pant Hits His Maiden ODI Century
Rishabh Pant Hits His Maiden ODI Century PC- Twitter

“You need a left-handed in the middle order. India have a lot of right-handers there, which is one-dimensional. And he has done reasonably well. He can be someone who can open the game for you and he can be a floater as well. A bit surprising but I hope it is not long-term. I will still back Rishabh Pant ahead of Dinesh Karthik. It’s a massive surprise”, Gambhir added.

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“I agree with him. That is a big call. He is one of the most phenomenal players, a modern top player. The way he bats, he is the future of Indian cricket. He is the future. Obviously, the World Cup is coming up but they have different planning,” Akram agreed with Gambhir on Star Sports.

Also Read: Ind vs Pak: Twitter Reacts As Rishabh Pant Misses Out From India’s Playing XI