It has been a challenging few months for Rishabh Pant. After his heroics against Australia and then against England at home, the left-hander has struggled in the recent past. He did not get going in the World Test Championship final against New Zealand. He was down with COVID-19 before the England series and has looked out of touch with the bat so far.
His scores in the series read 25, 36, 22, 2 and 1. Pant’s wicket-keeping has looked shar but his batting has left a lot to be desired. Barring the openers, the Indian batting unit has struggled and Rishabh Pant has not looked like himself in the first three games of the five-match Test series. He seems to be caught in a muddle and has fished at balls wide outside the off stump. There is no doubt over his importance to the Indian side and a lot is expected out of the swashbuckling batsman in the upcoming games.
Wriddhiman Saha is the other wicket-keeper batsman in the squad, but he will have to wait for his chance to replace Pant. He was dropped after the disastrous Adelaide Test match. Saha’s wicket-keeping skills are superior to Pant but he does not have match-winning capabilities with the bat. Pant, when he gets going, can change the fate of a match within hours as was evident in Australia.
In Virat Kohli and Ravi Shastri, Pant has the backing of the Indian management. Despite the flak Team India’s batting has been receiving on social media, the management is confident that they will bounce back in the upcoming fourth Test at the Oval.
Rishabh Pant bats at number 6, which is a vital position, and he needs to start getting his form back. A Pant on song renders a lot of balance to the Test side.