Sunil Gavaskar has lauded Rishabh Pant for his excellent glovework behind the wickets in England's first innings of the second Test in Chennai.
Rishabh Pant held two acrobatic catches on the second day of the Test to get rid of Ollie Pope and Jack Leach. He also looked assured while keeping on a tough track, with Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel getting the ball to turn and bounce viciously.
While reviewing the day's proceedings on Star Sports, Sunil Gavaskar spoke in glowing terms about Rishabh Pant's wicketkeeping and his desire to learn.
The former Indian skipper disclosed that Ricky Ponting, Pant's head coach at the Delhi Capitals, was also effusive in his praise for the youngster's willingness to put in the hard yards.
"I am extremely impressed with Rishabh Pant's keeping today. I spent a lot of time with Ricky Ponting recently in Australia and he was praising Rishabh Pant's work ethic a lot. He was telling that Pant is a young player who wants to improve," said Gavaskar.
"Ponting told that when Pant had come for the IPL he was a little over-weight. So, when he was asked to reduce his weight a little, he put a lot of hard work and lost a lot of weight and was back to his normal weight when he reached Australia," added the former Indian batsman.
"Rishabh Pant thinks a lot about his cricket" - Sunil Gavaskar
Sunil Gavaskar pointed out that Rishabh Pant has also been learning the tricks of the trade from Wriddhiman Saha.
"We have also heard that Rishabh Pant sits with Wriddhiman Saha every evening and discusses about wicket-keeping. Everyone knows that Wriddhiman Saha is the No.1 keeper if we talk about only wicket-keeping but the Indian team needs an all-rounder who can play destructive knocks just like Rishabh Pant is doing, because of which he has been selected ahead of Saha," observed Gavaskar.
The cricketer-turned-commentator concluded by stating that Rishabh Pant is a thinking cricketer although he may seem like a happy-go-lucky character.
"Pant is still trying to learn from Saha by giving him the respect and it is because of that we are seeing the improved wicket-keeping performances. This guy looks carefree the way he bats but thinks a lot about his cricket and it is a very good thing for Indian cricket," Sunil Gavaskar signed off.
Rishabh Pant certainly stood out behind the stumps in England's first innings of the second Test in Chennai. However, the fourth innings of the Test will present an even bigger challenge, and a good performance there will give him immense confidence.