T20 World Cup 2021: "Rishabh Pant is batting like a top-order batter" - Aakash Chopra on what Team India lack in their finishing

Team India’s wicketkeeper-batter Rishabh Pant. Pic: Getty Images
Team India’s wicketkeeper-batter Rishabh Pant. Pic: Getty Images
Renin Wilben Albert

Former India batter Aakash Chopra has opined that lack of form in the middle and lower order has hurt the team, which is why they have not been able to finish with a flourish at the T20 World Cup 2021. Chopra pointed out that while Hardik Pandya has hardly scored any runs in 2021, even Rishabh Pant is batting more like a top-order batter.

India have had a disastrous run in the T20 World Cup 2021 so far, going down to Pakistan by 10 wickets and New Zealand by eight wickets, putting their semi-final hopes in serious jeopardy. The batters let the team down on both occasions.

Discussing about India’s batting woes on his YouTube channel, Chopra pointed out that the team’s designated finishers are not doing the job. He explained:

“Form is what India is lacking (in the finishing department). Hardik Pandya hasn't scored runs in 2021. As for Rishabh Pant, he is batting like a top-order batter. Even in the IPL, we saw that he came in at No. 4. Where did he play the role of finisher in any of the matches? I cannot recall any game where he performed the role of a finisher in the IPL that just ended.”

Speaking about the change in Pant’s batting approach in recent times, the 44-year-old further added:

“Even if we go back to the England series, Pant wasn’t doing the finishing job. He is looking more and more like a No. 4 batter. So India are not getting that swashbuckling finish in T20 cricket. And Hardik Pandya is not in any kind of form. These two were supposed to be India’s finishers.”
Some of Rishabh Pant's One handed sixes 🙋‍♂️6️⃣🏏@RishabhPant17 #RP17

Pandya was dismissed for 11 off 8 against Pakistan and scored 23 off 24 against New Zealand. Pant made 39 off 30 against Pakistan and 12 off 19 versus the Kiwis.

Click here to view the T20 World Cup telecast channel list.

“He is not a proven performer in T20Is yet” - Chopra on Jadeja’s finishing skills while playing for India

In T20IHardik Bat Avg : 19.18Bowl Avg : 26.85M.O.M : 1 (51 matches)Ball Per Six Ratio : 12.16JadejaBat Avg : 17.06Bowl Avg : 30.84M.O.M : 1 (52 matches)Ball Per Six Ratio : 32.14India's Current Top Two All-rounders has been less effective for India in T20I format 💔

Chopra further pointed out that while Ravindra Jadeja has excelled in the role of finisher in the IPL, he is yet to replicate the same at the T20I level.

Admitting that the all-rounder has the talent to succeed in the role for India, the former cricketer said:

“Jaddu (Jadeja) is a good finisher. He has performed the role in the IPL but in international T20 cricket, we haven’t seen him repeat the exploits. He has the reputation and the potential as well but we haven’t seen those special performances at the top level yet. We are all assuming that it will happen. But he is not a proven performer in T20Is yet. He has a strike rate of just over 110 (113.77).”

Jadeja top-scored for India in the match against New Zealand, contributing an unbeaten 26 off 19.

Edited by Samya Majumdar
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