India vs South Africa: ‘He needs to rediscover himself,’ Twitter has a field day after Rishabh Pant’s exclusion from Test team

Hindustan Times

Hindustan Times

Author 2019-10-01 17:48:35


Virat Kohli confirmed that Wriddhiman Saha is going to make a comeback to the team in place of Rishabh Pant for the first Test against South Africa in Vizag. The pressure was already mounting on Pant ahead of South Africa’s tour of India. Fans and critics had started pointing out flaws in Pant’s temperament as a middle order mainstay. With his underwhelming performance in the T20I series against the Proteas, the call for Pant’s exclusion grew louder.

He had poor series against the West Indies while only scoring 23 runs in the T20Is against South Africa. Now his exclusion from the first team has compounded to his problems.

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“Yes Saha is fit and fine to go. He is going to start the series for us. His keeping credentials are for everyone to see. He has done well with the bat whenever he has got a chance. It was unfortunate that he was out with an injury. According to me he is the best keeper the world. With these conditions he starts for us,” said Kohli on the eve of the first Test.

Pant’s exclusion from the side invoked a lot of reaction on Twitter as fans started debating Indian team management’s decision to include Saha. Here are some of the comments:-

Pant was included in the side after Saha was injured and now with the Bengal wicket-keeper regaining fitness, the management has given him the nod ahead of the younger Pant, especially because of the conditions at home, which is expected to assist the spinners.

Of late Pant has been criticised for reckless stroke-making and that may have have been a factor in the team management’s decision to start with Saha.

Saha has played 32 Tests, scoring 1164 runs at 30.63.

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However, the captain was quick to add that the team management wanted to ease Saha back into the team and that is one of the reasons he did not play in the Caribbean. “We felt like Rishabh, given the opportunities, had done well. Although Saha was always going to start but we felt like just let him ease back into things rather than just forcing him into starting immediately.

“...Saha was always the one we would back as a pure keeper in Test cricket. He has done well under pressure situations in the past for us, so it was just about finding the right opportunity and the moment to bring him back in. And you need to be wary in a team environment where you understand when to bring a player back and when to give another guy more opportunities” he reasoned. “I felt for now, it’s the right time for Saha to come back and get in to his zone,” said Kohli.


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