Former Australia opener Matthew Hayden offered his opinions on the Rishabh Pant vs Dinesh Karthik debate for India’s T20 World Cup wicket-keeper.
India will kick-off their T20 World Cup journey against Pakistan on October 23 in Melbourne.
For their most recent games, India has been playing musical chairs with Dinesh Karthik and Rishabh Pant. India’s Karthik started the Asia Cup, but when Ravindra Jadeja hurt himself, they felt the need for a left-hander, therefore Pant replaced him for the remainder of the competition.
But for the first game of the series against Australia, Karthik was back in the lineup. The challenge for the Indian think tank is that neither Pant nor Karthik have been able to provide a significant performance in the opportunities that have recently arisen.
Pant’s power-hitting will be more useful for India: Matthew Hayden
Matthew Hayden believes Pant’s power-hitting will be more effective for India in Australia’s larger boundaries, while Karthik may struggle to clear the ropes.
“No, I don’t think so. For me, it has to be Rishabh Pant. You need to bank on him for the T20 World Cup. If this was a longer version of the game, you might see otherwise. When you are playing in Australian conditions. You want the power. DK is a magnificent player when he can use the pace of the bowler and the pitch but MCG is a big ground,” Matthew Hayden said.
“You need a proper monumental hit to clear the ground, especially the square of the wicket. So it’s so key to have power hitters, at least 3-4 players who can hit the ball long. Rishabh has got that versatility. I’d like to see him play more orthodox, he’s been lost in experiments for long now,” Matthew Hayden said.
India squad for ICC T20 World Cup: Rohit Sharma (Captain), KL Rahul (vice-captain), Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Deepak Hooda, Rishabh Pant (wicket-keeper), Dinesh Karthik (wicket-keeper), Hardik Pandya, R. Ashwin, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Harshal Patel, Arshdeep Singh.