‘We have to stick with Pant for a while’ – Rohit Sharma
Samson's selection is bound to put pressure on incumbent wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant.
Updated - Nov 2, 2019 6:54 pm
India will lock horns with Bangladesh in the T20I series opener at the Arun Jaitley Stadium in Delhi on Sunday, November 03. Rohit Sharma, who is set to become the most capped Indian International in the shortest format of the game will lead the Men in Blue in the absence of regular skipper Virat Kohli.
Team India has made a few interesting changes to the squad that drew the three-match T20I series against South Africa last month. The national selectors have included all-rounder Shivam Dube and right-arm leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal into the set-up.
Too early to judge Rishabh Pant, feels Rohit Sharma
However, the most interesting selection was that of Kerala and Rajasthan Royals swashbuckling wicketkeeper-batsman Sanju Samson, who earned his call-up courtesy a whirlwind double hundred in the Vijay Hazare Trophy.
Samson’s selection is bound to put pressure on incumbent wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant. Pant, who averages 20.31 in his T20I career thus far has blown more cold than hot in recent times and his shot selection is something that has come under intense scrutiny. In 2019, Pant has registered just one fifty-plus score and has gotten out on single digits on as many as six occasions.
However, Rohit Sharma has backed the underfire Pant. The 32-year-old feels that it is too early to pass judgment on the southpaw, considering he is still very young in his International career while also asserting that the left-hander will be the first-choice wicketkeeper for the series.
“Both wicketkeepers (Rishabh Pant and Sanju Samson) that we have in our squad are pretty talented. We have stuck with Pant, this is the format that gave him a lot of attention, this is the format that he excelled to start with,” Rohit Sharma said on the eve of the 1st T20I in Delhi.
“We have to stick with him [Pant] for a while and see what he does. We have seen how well he can take the game forward if he has his day. We just need to back him a little more. He’s hardly played 15-20 T20Is. So it’s still very early to judge whether he is good or not. I still feel there’s a lot of time left before we pass any judgment on Rishabh,” Rohit said on the eve of the first T20I as quoted by India Today.