MS Dhoni has retired from international cricket and Team India is in search to find their next wicket-keeper batsman to represent the country. Dhoni has been one of the best cricketers India have produced with numerous records to his name. On top of that, Dhoni has been a champion captain with 2 world titles to his name. So replacing Mahendra Singh Dhoni would be a difficult task for any individual.
However, that responsibility was put on a young wicketkeeper-batsman from Delhi. Rishabh Pant burst onto the scene with spectacular performances in the Indian Premier League. He was fast-tracked into the Indian team and even justified his selection with impressive displays in Indian and Australian conditions.
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But things have gone downhill for the 21-year-old as 2019 and 2020 hasn’t been kind years for him. He played at the 2019 World Cup but problems have continued to mount for him. He hasn’t been able to fire with the bat and has even lost his position in the limited-overs team.
IPL 2020 wasn’t a happy hunting ground for Pant as he struggled to time the ball. Former India batsman Gautam Gambhir talked about Pant and asked the media to stop comparing him to MS Dhoni.
“First of all, you have to stop saying that Rishabh Pant is the next MS Dhoni. That is one thing which media needs to stop doing it. The more media talks about it, the more Rishabh Pant starts thinking on those chances. He can never be MS Dhoni. He has to be Rishabh Pant.”
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“MS Dhoni probably had so much of range when he came on to international sixes. With Rishabh Pant, only because he could hit those big sixes and stuff, people started comparing him with someone like MS Dhoni. Rishabh Pant has a lot to improve, especially from the keeping point of views and from the batting point of view as well.”
In the 12 matches he has played in this edition of the IPL, Pant has scored only 285. But those runs have come at a strike-rate of 109, which is a dismal return if we look at how Pant chooses to play.