Rishabh Pant got too much backing from Virat Kohli, needed a kick on the back: Irfan Pathan

Pant has often been criticised for throwing his wicket away in crunch moments.

Virat Kohli & Rishabh pant
Virat Kohli & Rishabh pant. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

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Irfan Pathan, the former Indian cricketer, reckons that Rishabh Pant has gotten a lot of backing from Virat Kohli and the rest of the national team management. The southpaw made his debut in the early 2017, but started playing regularly from India’s Test series against England in 2018. Even as in Test cricket, he has a couple of big centuries, he hasn’t quite delivered in ODIs and T20Is.

Pant has often been criticised for throwing his wicket away, playing some rash strokes. Pathan, who retired from the game earlier this year in January, reckons that the left-hander should get some breathing space and the spotlight should be removed from him.

I think that will do a world of good to Rishabh Pant, says Pathan

“If you talk of Rishabh Pant, he is a young guy, very talented, there was a lot of focus on him. So, the focus getting removed from him, it will do a world of good to Rishabh Pant and many other cricketers,” Pathan was quoted as saying on Star Sports’ show Cricket Connected.

Pathan reckons that Pant should get a “kick on the back” as that could propel him into greater things in his career. “Sometimes you are getting too much backing which Virat Kohli is backing him in the public eye as well, but I think when you get a little bit of kick on your back, that’s when if you have talent you are going to go big,” he stated.

Earlier this year, Pant got injured during the ODI series against Australia at home. Thereafter, KL Rahul started donning the keeping gloves. Rahul did well to the extent that Pant had to warm the benches for a few games. Even in Test cricket, Wriddhiman Saha has been preferred ahead of him.

“I have no doubt that even though all the pressure is coming on him, he had to miss out some matches in T20 cricket with KL Rahul going out and doing what he did as a wicketkeeper as well and that is going to put pressure, but I think that will do a world of good to Rishabh Pant,” he added.

Pant is next expected to be seen in the 2020 Indian Premier League (IPL) where he plays for the Delhi Capitals (DC), led by Shreyas Iyer.