Former Indian cricketer MSK Prasad wants Rishabh Pant to take his time at the crease and trust his defense more instead of trying to play his shots like in Australia. He pointed out that the Australian and English pitches are quite different so the approach also has to be different.
Pant has had a poor outing by his standards, not able to play a significant knock in any of the Tests so far. He had scores of 2 and 1 in the Headingley Test, leading to concerns about whether he is good enough to play in the tough English conditions. Speaking to Indiatoday.in, Prasad suggested a few changes the 23-year-old ‘keeper can make.
“He [Pant] has had a fantastic run in the last year. But there are differences between Australian pitches and England pitches. There are minute adjustments that he needs to make. He scored plenty of runs in Australia and India. In Australia, the wickets are hard and bouncy and in India, we got flat and turners. In England, the conditions are a little tough,” Prasad said.
Pant is more than capable of scoring quick runs, but what he hasn’t been able to do is play defensively. Prasad opined that the run-scoring isn’t that easy in England so the required adjustments need to be made.
“He should look to spend more time in the crease. He should be thinking more about spending time on the crease rather than worrying about runs now. If he spends more hours on the crease, then he can be assured of runs as well.”
“He is trusting his defense but he is in the same flow as he was in Australia and India. Had he been playing again in Australia, the pattern of quick runs he has developed would have benefited. But this mental adjustment is what he has to make,” he added.
“What I am seeing is he is in a hurry to get runs” – MSK Prasad
Rishabh Pant is naturally very aggressive and has an inbuilt counter-attacking instinct. As was seen in the first two Tests, if the team is in trouble, he would try to take the English bowlers on instead of going into a shell. Maybe, he needs to play according to the conditions more than the situation, as per Prasad.
“What I am seeing is he is in a hurry to get ruins. It is possible in India, it is even possible in Australia. Whereas in England, he has to play to the conditions. If he starts spending more time in the middle because you’re assured of a boundary from him every 2-3 overs if he starts spending time. His role is very, very important in the middle-order if we are to win this series from here,” Prasad concluded.
The Indian middle-order is quite weak so Pant might need to step up if India is to stay in the series.