India vs South Africa: Rishabh Pant is very important and an integral part of our plan in the coming months, says Rahul Dravid | Cricket News



BENGALURU: India’s head coach Rahul Dravid made it clear on Sunday that underfire Rishabh Pants is a “big” and “integral” part of the set-up towards the T20 World Cup in Australia.
Pant, who led the team in the five-game series against South Africa which ended in a 2-2 draw after the last match was canceled due to rain, managed only 58 runs over five innings that raised questions about his place in the shortest format.
However, Dravid was very clear that Pant isn’t going anywhere.
“Personally, he would have liked to score a few more points, but that’s not about him. He’s definitely a very big part of our plans for the next few months,” Dravid said in the post-match press conference.

He was adamant that he wouldn’t judge someone based on just one streak – be it batting form or captaincy.
“I just don’t want to be critical. In the middle, you need people to play slightly attacking cricket, to take the game a bit more. Sometimes it’s very difficult to judge it based on two or three games. , “said the head coach.
In fact, Dravid was impressed with Pant’s strike rate of over 158 during the IPL where he had a disappointing 340 runs for the Delhi Capitals.

“I think he had a pretty good IPL in terms of strike rate although maybe he didn’t look good on average. In IPL he looked to go up a bit (in terms of averages ) and probably three years ago he was on those numbers. Hopefully we can get those numbers from him internationally.
The pants are a high risk game that comes with a price and the coach is willing to pay the price looking at the big picture.
“In the process (of playing an offensive game) he can go wrong in a few games, but he remains an integral part of our batting team with the power he has and the fact that he is left-handed is important for us. in the middle of the overs he played some good shots,” he said.

On his captaincy, Dravid felt that Pant did well considering he led the team in the series 0-2.
“To bring a team down from 0-2 and level it at 2-2 and give us a chance to win was good. The captain is not just about wins and losses. He (Pant) is a young captain, who grows as a leader It’s too early to judge him and you don’t want to do that after a streak,” Dravid was clear in his thought process.
“It was nice to see he had opportunities to lead, keep and strike. He had a lot of load on him, but he took that experience and credited him for making sure we are went from 0-2 to 2-2”, the coach has nothing but praise for the substitute skipper.


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