'Live by the sword, die by the sword': Gambhir dissects Pant's 'rash' batting approach, says 'he's not like Virat Kohli'
- Rishabh Pant on Sunday tried to launch Andile Phehlukwayo for six but was caught at deep cover. It was poor shot selection from the youngster, not for the first time on the tour.
Rishabh Pant has often come under the scanner for rash dismissals and not putting a price on his wicket. The 24-year-old dasher wears his heart on his sleeve while batting but draws criticism for his high-risk batting approach.
The left-handed batter again received flak after perishing for a golden duck in the third and final ODI against South Africa at Cape Town. Pant tried to launch Andile Phehlukwayo for six but was caught at deep cover. It was poor shot selection from the youngster, not for the first time on the tour.
Pant had come in to bat after a well-set Shikhar Dhawan departed after scoring 61. Facing his first ball of the contest, he was willing to take on all comers, no holds barred. The outcome was he had to depart for a nought, which eventually also led to former skipper Virat Kohli's exit on 65. Deepak Chahar scored a fine 54 from 33 balls to get India close to the 288-run target. But the tourists lost their last three wickets for the addition of five runs and were bundled out for 283 with four balls to spare in the innings. '
Former India opener Gautam Gambhir dissected India's run-chase and weighed in on Pant's innings, saying that the young wicketkeeper-batter will stick to his flamboyant batting approach. Gambhir further mentioned the high-risk factor about Pant's knocks and also underlined his defiant 85 in the previous ODI at Paarl.
“You have to accept him the way he is. He will play match-winning innings but also play rash shots like today. If the management is patient to back a player like this, then we can see him getting more opportunities.”
"You live by the sword, you die by the sword. Pant will continue playing in the manner that he's currently playing. He's not someone like Virat Kohli, who will slowly build his innings. Yes, the team management can groom Pant to do that but it won't happen overnight... it will take time," said Gambhir on Star Sports in the post-match show.
Gambhir also addressed the Indian team's batting woes. The run-chase at Newlands exposed the fragility of Indian middle-order yet again, which saw Suryakumar Yadav (39) and Shreyas Iyer (26) failing to grab the opportunity to shine and steer the visitors past the finish line.
“If someone like Kohli finishes the match, it's just another day at the office for him. But we wanted to see someone like Shreyas or Suryakumar finish the match. Had either of the two finished the run-chase, one would have emerged as the winner of the middle-order competition.”
"Kohli previously has won games for India when the required run-rate was over six... but both these youngsters lost a golden opportunity today. A match-winning innings today from Shreyas or Surya would have showcased the ability of both batters to play under pressure situations," Gambhir further stated.