DC went down to Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) by one run on Tuesday in a pulsating IPL 2021 game in Ahmedabad. In their previous clash, DC needed a Super Over to get the better of Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH).
At a virtual press conference following DC’s heartbreaking loss to RCB, Ponting said that Rishabh Pant would be better of for the experience. He elaborated in this regard:
“Our last game went to a Super Over as well. This one got down to one run today. It can only hold him (Rishabh Pant) in good stead for the bigger games at the back end. Obviously, we are not thinking about the back end of the tournament yet. We have got a bit of a tough run coming up, in which we have got three games in four days I think.”
The DC coach further added:
“We have got to take our learnings away from tonight. I am sure Rishabh (Pant) will learn a lot about himself. I am sure all players getting in that situation today, where every run counts and every ball counts, they will learn a lot from that. That is certainly what I will be talking to the boys about. Our last two games have been decided by the narrowest of margins.”
Rishabh Pant wants to be the man who wins games for DC: Ricky Ponting
While Shimron Hetmyer smashed an unbeaten 53 off only 25 balls for DC, captain Rishabh Pant struggled to get the big hits. He remained unbeaten on 58 off 48.
The left-hander did manage to hit the last two balls of the match for boundaries, but it was a case of too little too late. Asked to analyse Rishabh Pant’s innings, Ponting observed:
“I thought Rishabh Pant played really well tonight. He will be disappointed. He wants to be in those situations. He wants to be the man who is in at the end and wins the game for DC. We didn’t do that tonight, but we were very close. He is growing every day as a captain as well. And that is the thing I am most impressed with about Rishabh Pant."
Ponting further said in praise of Rishabh Pant:
"Over the last six or eight months, I think he has grown as a person every day. It is part of my job to work with him and let him grow and develop. Just give him a few little pointers along the way. We certainly won’t overanalyse tonight. It was a magnificent game of cricket. Unfortunately, RCB were just a little bit too good for us.”
Chasing 172 runs for victory, DC were struggling at 92 for 4 in the 13th over. However, a late surge saw them get to within one run of RCB’s total.