Delhi batsman Rishabh Pant didn’t have an outing to remember in the recently concluded Nidahas Trophy 2018 which India won by defeating Bangladesh in the finals. The T20 tournament in Sri Lanka saw India fielding a relatively young squad with a majority of senior players getting rest after the gruelling South Africa tour. Though Pant couldn’t make most of the series with his bat but was sure to gain a lot from Indian cricket team’s coach Ravi Shastri who handed him his report card at the end of the series and told him the areas he needs to work on.
Ahead of the 11th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), the explosive southpaw is rearing to make his presence felt in the competition and work on the areas singled out by Ravi Shastri. Pant managed ordinary scores of 23 and 7 in two games of in Sri Lanka and lost his place to a much experienced Dinesh Karthik, who had a memorable finish to the series with a match-winning last ball six at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo to snatch the title from Bangladesh’s jaws. Karthik’s fiery 8-ball 29 in the finals earned him praise from across the country and has once again diminished Pant’s hopes of making it in the Indian team.
However, the youngster who took the IPL and domestic scene by storm for Delhi believes he will get his chance with time. Revealing about his interaction with Shastri, Pant said he is trying to implement Shastri’s advice in his game. “I am working on certain skills and also fitness with my coach Tarak Sinha (Sonnet coach). While returning from Sri Lanka, I had an interaction with Ravi Shastri. He told me to work on certain skills and I am trying to implement it in my game,” Pant was quoted as saying by the TOI.
The Delhi Daredevils have started their practice sessions at the Feroz Shah Kotla ahead of the IPL 2018 under their new coach Ricky Ponting and captain Gautam Gambhir. Pant who has previously played under the likes of Zaheer Khan and coach Rahul Dravid said he was positive about his team’s chances in the upcoming IPL and said that Ponting and Gambhir have both helped him believe the team’s fate is about to change. “Ricky sir gives you a lot of positive vibes. He is someone who always wants to win and same with our skipper Gautam Gambhir. I am expecting that things will change this season,” said the wicketkeeper-batsman.