“If He Doesn’t Do Well…”: Dinesh Karthik Weighs In On Rishabh Pant’s Criticism

India wicket-keeper batter Rishabh Pant has been subjected to plenty of criticism over his form in white-ball cricket. While the recent T20 matches for Pant have been quite disastrous, some are asking for him to be axed from the ODI team too, because of his form in the shortest format. Dinesh Karthik, veteran Indian wicket-keeper batter, however, has asked Pant’s critics to look at the two things separately. Karthik also backed Pant’s case in the 50-over format by highlighting his average in recent matches, which also include a century.

Pant wasn’t a part of the Indian team that lost to Bangladesh in the first ODI. But KL Rahul, the player who took up the wicket-keeper’s role in Pant’s place, was the top-scoring batter for the team. Whether Rahul gets the wicket-keeper’s role in the long haul or not, isn’t yet certain but Karthik doesn’t want Pant to be sidelined.

Speaking to Cricbuzz, Karthik said that people can’t say that Pant should be out of the ODI format. Karthik is of the opinion that Pant should be given chances in the 50-over format. But, if he doesn’t produce results, the team should ‘move on’.

“We need to look at it separately. In one-day cricket in the last 10 innings, he averages 45-plus. He obviously got the match-winning score of 120 (125 not out) in the recently concluded series in England. So he’s done very well for himself and when someone has done very well for himself, you cannot look at him and say ‘Oh he should be out from one-day cricket,” said Karthik.

“I think, you know, you need to give him the opportunity to be out there and do well and if he doesn’t do well, then move on. But you can’t just move away because he has done something else in another format. I think that’s something that’s unfair to the player as well.

“I think because of the amount of cricket, especially T20 that is played, obviously, they are comparing that and adding those scores and saying, ‘Oh, he hasn’t done well’. That’s not how we need to look at things.”

Pant isn’t a part of India’s squad for the ODI series against Bangladesh but is expected to return fit and ready for the Test assignment.

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