Ahead of the three-match T20I series against Australia, the Indian team management must decide whether to play both Rishabh Pant and Dinesh Karthik in the playing XI or whether there is room for just one between the two as the wicketkeeper batter. Pant’s performance in the shortest format hasn’t been great this year, while Karthik has shown he can finish innings in style. Former Indian batter Wasim Jaffer has said he would choose Dinesh Karthik for Pant in the first T20I against Australia.
Jaffer also said leaving Rishabh Pant out of the World Cup “will be for the best” as he won’t fit in at number 4 or 5.
“They (India) need to find out whether Rishabh Pant is playing or not. The Indian think tank has put a lot of thought into deploying Rishabh Pant. He has been brilliant and we have talked about it many times in Test cricket and in the ODIs, he really has series -winning game-changing strokes, but that hasn’t happened in T20 internationals or even T20s,” Jaffer said on ESPNcricinfo’s “T20 Timeout.”
“So I think India needs to figure out if they want to stay in the top six with Rishabh Pant or if they want to stay with Dinesh Karhitk, who has done really well since the IPL, whatever chance he gets. For me personally, Rishabh Pant doesn’t fit in number 4 or 5,” he added.
Speaking further about Pant, Jaffer said: “His best place is probably to start batting, which I don’t think will happen because KL, Rohit and Virat are going to occupy that 1-2-3. I feel like leaving Rishabh Pant out for now in the World Cup will be best.”
Pant hasn’t done anything substantial in the shortest form this year, scoring 52 against the West Indies in February 2022.
India squad for Australia T20I series: Rohit Sharma (c), KL Rahul (vc), Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Deepak Hooda, Rishabh Pant, Dinesh Karthik, Hardik Pandya, R. Ashwin, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Harshal Patel, Deepak Chahar, Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav.
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