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Home / Cricket / India vs West Indies: ‘It is disrespectful’ - Virat Kohli launches passionate defense of Rishabh Pant

India vs West Indies: ‘It is disrespectful’ - Virat Kohli launches passionate defense of Rishabh Pant

India vs West Indies: Virat Kohli said that Rishabh Pant needs to be left alone and made it clear that the team believes that the youngster is a match-winner.

cricket Updated: Dec 06, 2019 08:54 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Virat Kohli with teammates Ravindra Jadeja and Rishabh Pant.
Virat Kohli with teammates Ravindra Jadeja and Rishabh Pant.(PTI)

Indian cricket team skipper Virat Kohli reiterated the fact that the team is completely behind Rishabh Pant and he even called it ‘disrespectful’ to not give him any space to perform. Ahead of the first T20I encounter against West Indies in Hyderabad on Friday, Kohli said that Pant needs to be left alone and made it clear that the team believes that the youngster is a match-winner. Pant was touted as the possible successor for MS Dhoni’s place in the Indian cricket team but the youngster has been less than impressive in the last couple of limited over series. Pant was unable to impress with the bat and the inclusion of Sanju Samson in the squad means extra pressure for him.

READ: Race to the top: Kohli, Rohit set to resume battle in Hyderabad

“We certainly believe in Rishabh’s ability. As you say, it’s (also) the player’s responsibility to do well but our responsibility is to give him space, to support him. He should get support and it is disrespectful if you don’t get it,” he said at the pre-match press conference.

“As Rohit (Sharma) said recently, he needs to be left alone, he is a match-winner. Once he comes good, you will see a very different version of him. He can’t be isolated to such an extent that he doesn’t do well. We are here to do things for him,” he added.

READ: Pant on verge of breaking MS Dhoni’s record against West Indies

Pant will have a chance to break MS Dhoni’s record against the Windies when he takes the field on Friday.

Currently, Dhoni has five dismissals (three catches and two stumpings) against West Indies - the most by any wicket-keeper in India-West Indies T20Is. Pant, who has three till now, is fifth in the list but with three matches coming up in the series, he will have a great chance to take the lead in the list.

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