Former Indian opener Krishnamachari Srikkanth has castigated one of the biggest stars in the current Team India squad during the three-match series between the Rohit Sharma-less side and hosts New Zealand. In the absence of seasoned campaigners Rohit, Virat Kohli and Jasprit Bumrah, New Zealand thrashed Shikhar Dhawan-led Team India in the 1st One Day International (ODI) to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.

In a match where stand-in skipper Shikhar Dhawan (72), opener Shubman Gill (50) and Shreyas Iyer (80) all played crucial knocks for Team India, wicketkeeper-batter Rishabh Pant had a forgetful outing with the willow. India’s first-choice wicketkeeper in white-ball cricket scored 15 off 23 balls in the ODI series opener between India and New Zealand.

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Pant, who also struggled to get going at the T20 World Cup in Australia, was called out by former India opener Srikkanth amid the wicketkeeper’s abysmal run with the bat in white-ball cricket. Sharing his views about Pant’s dry run in New Zealand on YouTube, Srikkanth has urged the Indian think tank to give Pant a break from international cricket.

“Maybe you can give him a break and tell him ‘just wait a bit, come and play in India’, They haven’t handled him well. Are you going to wait for a couple of matches before giving him a break or remove him after one or two games? Yes, Rishabh Pant is not utilising the chances he’s getting. I am very disappointed – ennada Pant-u (what is this Pant)?,” Srikkanth said.

Before showcasing another batting failure for India in the 1st ODI, Pant scored only 17 runs in two matches for the visitors in the T20I series against New Zealand. Lashing out at Pant before the 2nd ODI between India and New Zealand, the 1983 World Cup winner asserted that the out-of-form batter needs to reinvent himself in the limited-overs format.

“You are messing up these chances. If you smash into such matches, it’ll be good right? The World Cup is coming up. Already a lot of people are saying that Pant isn’t scoring so it’ll add fuel to the fire. He’s going to put pressure on himself. He needs to reinvent himself. He has to do something right – stand and play for a while and then go for it…He’s throwing his wicket away all the time,” Srikkanth added.



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