Agarkar wants Rishabh Pant to replace Dhoni in ODIs
Former Indian all-rounder Ajit Agarkar feels that it is the right time to think beyond MS Dhoni in One Day Internationals, as he prefers Rishabh Pant over the legendary wicket-keeper.
Dhoni's batting has been criticised by cricketing experts for the past few years, as the 37-year old has not been able to perform consistently. In this Asia Cup as well, he was not able to convert the chances given to him with the bat, although his performance behind the stumps with the gloves was quite impressive as usual.
With the World Cup approaching in just a few months from now, there is not much time left for him to regain his form, and the management has to take a bold decision.
Agarkar believes that it will be the right time to try Pant at number 6 by resting MS Dhoni in the upcoming ODI matches against the West Indies. The Delhi wicket-keeper batsman has impressed all with his hitting abilities in the longer format of the game, as he scored a century in the last Test against England at The Oval, which was followed by a 92 off just 84 balls in the first Test match against the West Indies at Rajkot.
“I can’t believe Pant is not a part of India’s shorter format setup,” Agarkar told ESPNCricinfo. He also said that there is no harm in resting MSD, if only to give the 21-year-old a chance.
Agarkar also backed his hitting abilities, and went on to say, “Hopefully they do that sooner, rather than later, against the West Indies in the ODI series. I mean, there are five ODIs and there will be an opportunity to play him somewhere in the middle order as a batsman or as a wicket-keeper. Everyone knows what Dhoni can bring to the side, and there is no harm in resting him for a couple of games.”