'Whole ground would start shouting Mahi Mahi' - Yuzvendra Chahal on Rishabh Pant's struggles while entering Indian team

‘Whole ground would start shouting Mahi Mahi’ – Yuzvendra Chahal on Rishabh Pant’s struggles while entering Indian team

Chahal added that Pant has matured a lot as a player in these years.

MS Dhoni and Rishabh Pant
MS Dhoni and Rishabh Pant. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

Rishabh Pant has made a great name for himself at the international level. His brief career has already seen him fetching great milestones and he is now India’s regular wicketkeeper-batter across formats. However, things were not easy for him while he made his entry in team India as he had to fill in the shoes of legendary MS Dhoni.

In the same light of events, ace spinner Yuzvendra Chahal recently opened up on the struggles that Pant had to face while being a newcomer in the Indian team. Chahal added that pressure on the young man was immense as if he would leave any catch or missed the ball, the crowds would start chanting Mahi Mahi. It was so much for a player who was just in his 19-20s.

“Actually, everyone wanted him (Pant) to be like Mahi Bhai. The way MSD was behind the stumps. I remember if Pant would ever drop any catch or the DRS went wrong, then the whole ground would start shouting ‘Mahi Mahi.’ So, there was a lot of pressure on that child (Pant)… because he was only around 19 or 20 years old at that time. We would tell him to ignore all these things and focus on his game. He was under tremendous pressure. Then he was also out of the team for a while,” Chahal told SGTV.

Rishabh has made a superb comeback: Yuzvendra Chahal

However, Chahal added that Pant has made a brilliant comeback now as he has matured as a player and has proved his class in all the formats. Pant’s class touched another level when he displayed sheer heroics in Brisbane to push India to win the Border Gavaskar Trophy.  His brilliant innings would be remembered in times to come and even in IPL, he has been doing a terrific job as a skipper where his team has already reached the playoffs after finishing at the top.

“He made a superb comeback. He has improved a lot; he has shown a lot of maturity. His performance has been really good and I guess people should understand that when a sportsperson is on the ground, he tries his best, and nobody wants to perform badly. People should give a little respect to the player,” he added.