The Virat Kohli-led team, which is leading 1-0 in the two-Test rubber, is likely to retain the same playing XI for the game. However, there is a debate as to whether the team management should replace young stumper Rishabh Pant with the experienced Wriddhiman Saha
New Delhi: With India set to face the West Indies in the second Test from today (August 30) in Kingston, former opening batsman Gautam Gambhir has given his opinion on who should take the wicketkeeper’s slot.
The Virat Kohli-led team, which is leading 1-0 in the two-Test rubber, is likely to retain the same playing XI for the game. However, there is a debate as to whether the team management should replace young stumper Rishabh Pant with the experienced Wriddhiman Saha.
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Saha lost to his Test place to Pant due to a long injury layoff. In England and Australia, Pant impressed by scoring century each in the Test series. However, he has often thrown his wicket away be it in the longer format or the limited-overs matches.
In the first Test in North Sound, Pant scored 24 and seven. Saha is in the squad and waiting to make a comeback.
Ahead of the second Test, Gambhir firmly backed Delhi’s Pant. “When someone (Pant) is averaging 48 (45.43 actually) with the bat and scored a hundred each in England and Australia, he deserves to be playing Test cricket. Saha needs to wait for his opportunity as Pant has grabbed his opportunity with both hands,” Gambhir told news agency PTI.
Also Gambhir’s former teammate Virender Sehwag too had given his views on Pant.
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"Pant is an extremely talented cricketer with huge potential. It will be important that he is groomed well," Sehwag told PTI.
"And now that he has been assured some quality time in the team it is important that he makes the best use of the opportunity and works to better his game and develop as a cricketer," he added.
Some experts have argued that Saha is a better wicketkeeper in Test cricket and should be played instead of Pant. However, the team management might stick with the 21-year-old left-handed batsman.
So far, Pant has played 10 Tests, 12 ODIs and 18 T20Is. He was part of India’s World Cup 2019 team where the ‘men in blue’ reached the semi-final where they lost to New Zealand.
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Last Updated Aug 30, 2019, 2:33 PM IST