Rishabh Pant would only get a nod ahead if MS Dhoni gets injured, claims Saba Karim

Rishabh Pant would only get a nod ahead if MS Dhoni gets injured, claims Saba Karim

If I have to pick just a T20 team, then I can think of Rana, but certainly not for ODIs, added Karim

Rishabh Pant
Rishabh Pant of Delhi Daredevils during a practice session. (Photo: IANS)

Former Indian wicketkeeper-batsman Saba Karim claimed that the young sensation of Indian cricket, Rishabh Pant, would only be able to break into the national side only if Mahendra Singh Dhoni gets injured. Former selector, Kiran More, also backed Saba’s comment by saying that berth in the Champions Trophy squad should not be considered on the basis of performance in a domestic T20 league.

Much has been made about the delay of the announcement of the Champions trophy squad to England. BCCI is currently battling with the ICC for the share of global revenues. The cash-rich Indian cricket board has been constantly threatening to pull out from the competition to protest the new revenue model.

However, Kiran More stated that the fifty-over format in English conditions is a completely different scenario. “The Champions Trophy (50 overs a side) is a different ball game in England. You need experienced players for that.” said Kiran More according to Indian Express.

In an interview with Livemint, Karim commented that one should focus on performance at domestic fifty over competitions rather than the IPL. “When you are picking a T20 team, then (giving weightage to) IPL performance is fine. If I have to pick just a T20 team, then I can think of Rana, but certainly not for ODIs. I will see what he has done in the Vijay Hazare tournament.”

Saba Karim further augmented by saying Nitish Rana should not be considered for national selection despite his heroics in the IPL and would prefer the like of Krunal Pandya to replace an unfit Ravindra Jadeja over Rana.

“Even Pant will get a look only if (MS) Dhoni is injured. Similarly, someone like Krunal Pandya will be seriously considered if Ravindra Jadeja is unfit. However, if Virat Kohli gets injured, I won’t consider Rana because he hasn’t done anything of note in domestic cricket, unlike a Pant or Pandya,” explained the former wicketkeeper.

Karim further went ahead and remarked that Nitish Rana has to follow his good performance in the IPL up by showing his calibre in first-class cricket. “Nitish (Rana) has done well in the IPL but didn’t have a great first-class season, so the onus is now on him to follow it up nicely in the next season,” concluded Saba Karim.

It would be interesting to find out whether the likes of Rishab Pant, Krunal Pandya and Nitish Rana, break into the national side in the upcoming edition of Champions Trophy, when and if the BCCI makes the most-awaited announcement.