Former Indian cricketer Reetinder Sodhi believes that the time has come for India to back Dinesh Karthik as their first-choice wicket-keeper and leave out Rishabh Pant.
The Indian team faced a disappointing exit from the Asia Cup 2022. They lacked a finishing touch in their Super 4 matches against Pakistan and Sri Lanka. While the top order produced most of the runs, India couldn’t make use of the death overs and fell short of 20-30 runs.
Sodhi spoke about how India lacked a finisher in the team and how Karthik could fit it. He also added that it is unfair to leave him out of playing eleven in the World Cup in Australia.
Pant hasn’t been consistent: Sodhi
Speaking to India News Sports, Sodhi said that Pant had enough opportunity but he wasn’t consistent.
“Before the Asia Cup, it was always Rishabh Pant for me. But now I feel the team needs to back Dinesh Karthik. Pant has the ability to hit sixes at will, but he has been given enough chances to perform under pressure in white-ball cricket and he hasn’t been consistent”, he said.
He added that Dinesh Karthik had performed well during difficult times and won matches.
“Dinesh Karthik has performed well in some games where you thought we had no chance. So it will only be fair for the management to give him all three games against Australia and test his credentials,” he added.
The former all-rounder also spoke about how the move to send Pant against the left-arm spinners didn’t work in the Asia cup.
“Left-handers can counter the left-arm spinners. But when will Pant do that? We are playing him to counter but he hasn’t been able to do so. Dinesh Karthik, on the other hand, has a variety of shots and can dominate the bowlers. So I don’t see Pant in India’s playing XI against Australia.”
India squad for Men’s T20 World Cup: Rohit Sharma (Captain), KL Rahul (vice-captain), Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Deepak Hooda, Rishabh Pant (wicket-keeper), Dinesh Karthik (wicket-keeper), Hardik Pandya, R. Ashwin, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Harshal Patel, Arshdeep Singh.
Standby players – Mohd. Shami, Shreyas Iyer, Ravi Bishnoi, Deepak Chahar.