India’s captain, Rohit Sharma, recently expressed his concern about Rishabh Pant’s absence from the ongoing Test series against Australia. Pant, who was involved in a car accident in December last year, sustained multiple injuries and has been ruled out of the game for a long time. According to Rohit Sharma, Pant’s quick scoring abilities and the way he bailed his team out of tricky situations are what India needs in the current Test series.
Rohit Sharma said during a press conference ahead of the fourth Test, “Not having Pant is definitely a huge loss. We know what he is capable of with the bat and his keeping has been a huge plus over the past couple of years. So he is a big miss, and when we knew he wasn’t going to be available to us, that was one of the reasons why we got Ishan Kishan in. He is a left-hander and can play attacking shots.”
Pant’s absence has been felt by the Indian team, and there has been a lot of talk about KS Bharat’s batting, who is nowhere near as effective as Rishabh Pant so far. However, Rohit feels that Bharat has experience playing domestic cricket and needs a longer rope to prove his mettle.
Rohit Sharma stated, “Bharat has played a lot of domestic cricket, zonal, India A and so on. It will be slightly unfair to judge him on these pitches. When someone makes his debut in a series, it is important to give him room to set himself up for a big score. I spoke to him at the start of the series that ‘Do not worry about the kind of pitches that we will be playing on. You will get enough time to prove yourself’ because these pitches are not easy.”
As India faced another batting collapse on Thursday against Australia in the 3rd Test at Indore, a section of fans in the stands started a chant for Rishabh Pant. Cries of “Rishabh Pant” and “Gabba” filled the air as the fans chanted for the player who was adjudged man of the match against Australia in 2020/21 in the 4th Test at the Gabba.
Former captain Ian Chappell also feels Rishabh Pant’s presence would have given sleepless nights to Australia captain Pat Cummins but even then India would start firm favourites in the upcoming four-match Test series beginning in Nagpur on Thursday.
Pant’s absence has been felt by the Indian team, and his fantastic Test record against Australia, scoring 624 runs in 7 matches at an incredible average of 62.40, has made his absence all the more significant.
In the ongoing Test series, India did well to end Australia’s first innings at 197, conceding an 88-run lead after Steve Smith’s side began at 156 for 4, but negotiating quality spin in favourable conditions remained a challenge. The hosts were bowled out for 163 in their second innings, meaning Australia only needed 76 runs to secure a rare Test victory in India, where India had only lost two Tests in the last ten years.
In conclusion, the absence of Rishabh Pant has been felt by the Indian team in the ongoing Test series against Australia. However, Rohit Sharma has expressed confidence in KS Bharat and believes that he needs a longer rope to prove himself. While Pant’s absence has been a significant loss for the Indian team, they still have a chance to bounce back in the remaining matches of the Test series.