ENG Vs IND, 2018: Know How Rishabh Pant Managed to Break into the Indian Test Squad?

Published - 19 Jul 2018, 10:41 PM | Updated - 10 Jan 2019, 01:33 AM

Rishabh Pant
Express photo by Kevin DSouza.

The selection of explosive wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant as a reserve keeper in the Indian squad for the first three Tests against England goes on to show that in sport six months is actually quite a lot of time to spring a surprise or so.

At the age of just 20, Pant has established himself as one of the most hard-hitting batsmen in the country. Till last year, he was considered as the one who could replace Mahendra Singh Dhoni in the limited-overs format when he decides to call it quits.

The viewpoint of selectors have changed:

The selection viewpoint of the selectors has certainly changed quite a bit. He was in India A squad for the current tour of England A which went ahead parallel to that of the senior side.

The stumper was added in the four-day match too. It suggests that he has been in the mix for the Test side as well as Wriddhiman Saha is out for at least two months following shoulder surgery.

The southpaw Pant scored a fighting half-century against the England A side in an otherwise poor showing by India at Worcester on Wednesday (July 18).  He has been included as a back-up to Dinesh Karthik.

In the absence of Saha, Karthik has emerged as the frontrunner to play all five Tests in England providing he performs up to standard in the first two Tests.

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Rishabh Pant
Credits: BCCI

The chairman of selectors MSK Prasad had mentioned a year ago that MS Dhoni had no challengers in the ODI squad.

Moreover, Pant had said that he doesn’t worry much about it as it is not in his hands. At times questions raised on his batting technique.

However, he has impressed all and sundry in the white-ball cricket. He is a clean striker of the ball and showed his prowess for the Delhi Daredevils (DD) in the recently concluded Indian Premier League (IPL).

Kiran More on Pant:

Former India selector Kiran More, who had earlier trained Pant said that the inclusion of the latter has added a new generation of cricketers to the national reckoning. He backed Pant’s selection.

However, he added that including Rishabh Pant in the limited-overs format would have helped him.

“He is exceptional and was playing for India A in England. But he could have been drafted in for the ODIs or T20s in the lead-up to this series. Having said that, it is good they are investing in him and carrying him with the team. He has the potential to be as dangerous as Adam Gilchrist batting at No 6 and 7,” said More.


Photo Credit: Web/Twitter.


“They should carry him. He has the talent. A wicketkeeper’s life is very difficult. I felt it was very harsh on Parthiv (to be dropped after Tests in South Africa). One bad Test and everybody starts pointing a finger at wicketkeepers. Parthiv provides options, like opening the batting,” he added.

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Rishabh Pant