India head coach Ravi Shastri recently commented on the future of MS Dhoni and also Rishabh Pant, who has been struggling to find his form in limited-overs cricket. Shastri even gave a hint that there is a possibility of KL Rahul doing the job behind the stumps during the T20 World Cup in Australia next year.
“It’s sensible (the break by Dhoni). I like the time (around IPL) when he will be starting to play again. I don’t think he is too keen on the one-day stuff. He is finished with Test cricket. T20 is an option. It’s a format that is tailor-made for him. But will his body be able to cope with the demands, only he will answer,” Ravi Shastri said while speaking to India Today during the programme Inspiration.
“The rest would have done him a world of good, mentally. That mental fatigue would have gone away by now. If he decides to play, which he will because he will play the IPL, then he will start training with a very fresh mind. Then you have got to see form,” he added.
Along with this, Shastri brought Rahul in the discussion as he has played the role of wicketkeeper for Karnataka in the domestic circuit, as well as, in the IPL.
“It is an absolute option. You got to see where your strength is. Tomorrow, there could be a couple of guys in the middle-order who are firing with unbelievable innings in the IPL. And then if you have a guy who can multi-task, who could be used at the top, because there’s some firepower at the back who are doing extremely well, then why not,” he expressed.
The head coach has also commented on Rishabh Pant, who has been in the limelight for his poor form both with the bat and gloves.
“You have got to cash in. Your work ethic should be solid. You have to have a solid approach to your batting. You can’t think everything is going to happen the way I want it to happen from ball 1. No, it won’t happen like that. This game teaches you. There’s a method to madness as well. So, he has to learn that method,” he added.
The coach also gave the hint that Rishabh Pant could be asked to play domestic cricket to work on his flaws.
“Sometimes, domestic cricket is good. There is less pressure in domestic cricket. He’s lucky that he has age on his side,” Shastri shared. “If he disappears for 3 months or 6 months, just to work on his game, people should not think he has been treated (badly). Absolutely not. He will come back tougher and stronger, if there is a need for that to happen.”
Just like the captain Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma, Shastri also thinks there is too much spotlight on Rishabh Pant and this is affecting his career.
“He doesn’t need to be spoken about as much as as he is spoken about now. No! He is young, give him time. In 5 years, if he doesn’t set the world on fire, then talk about it,” Ravi Shastri concluded.