World Cup 2019: Why Rishabh Pant’s selection was unfair to Ravindra Jadeja and Dinesh Karthik
From the day the Indian squad for the World Cup was released to yesterday, every member of the Indian team management had to answer one question – Why is Rishabh Pant not a part of the team?
The 21-year-old finally got a chance to don the blue in a thrilling encounter against England. All eyes were on the flamboyant left-handed batsman as one billion hearts wished for a sublime knock from Pant. Instead, Pant played a very ordinary, run-of-the-mill knock which increased pressure on the batters who came after him.
Known for his explosive batting, the youngster from Uttarakhand was fairly quiet and could only muster up 32 runs in 29 balls. It was clear that he was trying too much, and none of his unorthodox shots were paying off. Liam Plunkett finally ended his misery in the 40th over of the game, but England were already in the driver’s seat by then.
Pant’s selection was a bit harsh on the experienced duo of Ravindra Jadeja and Dinesh Karthik, especially when these two were warming the bench from day one of this tournament. Jadeja should have been the perfect replacement for Vijay Shankar, as that would have given Virat Kohli an extra bowling option. An experienced sixth bowler is necessary when one of the prime bowlers is having a bad day like Yuzvendra Chahal had yesterday.
Jadeja’s numbers against England are brilliant. He has picked up 37 English wickets in 22 matches and has also scored 465 runs at an average of over 45. Besides that, he is one of the most agile fielders of this decade.
Dinesh Karthik could also have been used. The 34-year-old is a much better batsman when he bats at number 4, which can be understood by looking at his stats. His ODI career average is 31, but when he bats at number 4, that figure rises to nearly 40.
He also had a great 2018 in the Indian shirt, scoring 122 runs at an average of over 40. In addition to it, Karthik has the experience which was needed yesterday, and which Pant didn’t possess. Whether the youngster will retain his place for the match against Bangladesh, or whether one of the two veterans will get a chance, remains to be seen.
Also read - World cup all time records