Bengal keeper-batter Abishek Porel is set to be named as Rishabh Pant’s replacement in the Delhi Capitals squad for IPL 2023, according to reports.
Porel, 20, has played 16 first-class matches, three List A games and three T20s so far. The left-handed batter made his first-class debut in February 2022 against Baroda. He has scored 695 runs at an average of 30.21, with six half-centuries. He has also registered a half-century in List A cricket.
Porel came up with handy contributions for Bengal in the Ranji Trophy this season. He scored 49 against Haryana in the group stage, 51 in the first semi-final against Madhya Pradesh and a defiant 50 in the final against Saurashtra.
According to a PTI journalist, Porel has done well in the warm-up games, and being young, he can be groomed. While the Bengal keeper is set to join DC for IPL 2023, Sarfaraz Khan could keep wickets for the franchise’s first few games of the season.
Regular Delhi Capitals captain Pant is unavailable for IPL 2023 owing to a road accident he was involved in towards the end of 2022. He's currently recuperating from multiple injuries. Veteran Australian batter David Warner will lead the Delhi franchise in Pant’s absence.
“In an ideal world for me, he’d be sitting next to me” - Ricky Ponting on Rishabh Pant
Delhi Capitals coach Ricky Ponting recently opened up on Pant’s absence from IPL 2023 due to a car accident. Admitting that the dynamic left-handed batter will be missed, the Australian legend said at an event:
“In an ideal world for me, he’d be sitting next to me in the dugout every match. But if that’s not possible, we’d like to make him part of the team in ways possible. We can have his number on our shirts or on caps. Just to make it clear that he’s our leader, even if he’s not with us.”
On DC’s first-choice wicketkeeper in the absence of Pant, Ponting said:
“We haven’t decided that yet. Sarfaraz (Khan) has joined us, and we’ll look at the practice games ahead to decide that. That’s one big hole Rishabh leaves behind. With the impact player rule coming in, we can use (it) a number of ways.”
Delhi Capitals begin their IPL 2023 campaign against Lucknow Super Giants in Lucknow on Saturday (April 1).
Get IPL 2023 Live Score along with Points Table & Schedule Updates at Sportskeeda.