‘I want to be the best wicketkeeper-batsman in the world’ – When Rishabh Pant opened up with Suresh Raina
Raina said that he would go on long drives with Pant, and it was during those drives that the 23-year-old really opened up.
Updated - Jan 24, 2021 12:18 pm
Rishabh Pant and the whole of India will surely not forget the four-match Test series that took place Down Under against Australia. The keeper-batsman played a pivotal role with the willow against the kangaroos, especially in the third and fourth Test matches.
Pant scored a total of 274 runs in the Test series and scored his runs at a whopping average of 68.50. In the third Test in Sydney, it was Pant’s rollicking 97 that threw the Australians out of their comfort zone. The left-hander put on a match-defining partnership of 148 runs for the fourth wicket with Cheteshwar Pujara and helped India salvage a draw.
In the fourth Test at The Gabba, Pant came to the fore and contributed when the side needed him. The 23-year-old scored an unbeaten 89, allowed India to stun Australia in their fortress at Brisbane, and helped his side to win the series 2-1.
Now, former Indian cricketer, Suresh Raina has said that Pant had told the CSK player that he wants to become the best wicketkeeper in the world. Raina added that Pant is surely a talented cricketer who has the potential to become a great player for the Indian side. Raina also revealed that there was a lot of chatter in the media about Pant, and all that the Indian keeper wanted was, somebody, to listen, and Raina did precisely that.
“Bhaiya, I want to be the best wicketkeeper-batsman in the world,” Pant had told Raina.
“I really didn’t have much to do with it. He is a young cricketer bursting with talent who in my view is set to become a great player for India. Back in June, he’d just come off a not so good time with the bat. There was a lot of talk about him. So, he just wanted a break from it all, from the media and from everything. All he wanted me to do was listen. He wasn’t looking for me to give anything, forget a solution,” said Raina in a chat with Cricbuzz.
Raina opens up about his bonding with Rishabh Pant
Raina also shed light on the personal bonding that he shares with Pant. The IPL batting legend said that Pant would come to Raina’s house, play with his kids and even chat with his wife. CSK’s highest run-scorer also added that both of them even watched a lot of comedy shows on Netflix, ate a lot of food, listened to music, and continuously chatted. Raina concluded by saying that he would even go on long drives with Pant, and it was during those drives that the 23-year-old really opened up.
“When we weren’t at training, he would be home all day, playing with my kids, chatting with the wife. We watched a lot of comedies on Netflix, ate a lot of good food, whatever he felt like eating, and just chatted away. We would go for drives around the city, either in his yellow car or at times in mine. We would listen to the music that we both enjoy. It was all so positive and even during those drives, he would open up a lot, and all I did was let him talk,” concluded Raina.
Pant is just 23 years old and has a truckload of challenges ahead of him. And, if he can continue with the good work with the willow-like how he did in the series against Australia, both Pant and the whole of India can rejoice.