India wicketkeeper-batter Rishabh Pant won’t be seen in action in the upcoming World Cup as he is currently on the road to recovery after surviving a near-fatal car accident last December.
Pant is undergoing rehabilitation at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bangalore. His return to competitive cricket is expected sometime next year.
In Rishabh’s absence, KL Rahul will perform the keeping duties and Ishan Kishan has a good chance of featuring in the playing XI as a specialist middle-order batter.
Even though Pant is not part of the team, his contributions to the team remain highly regarded by cricket fans and experts like Adam Gilchrist.
"I think Rishabh has inspired a lot of wicket-keeper batters around the world to play that way (he does). It is fascinating for such a young man to have such an impact that Rishabh has had and others are responding and playing in that positive manner," Gilchrist quoted as saying by PTI.
Gilchrist praised Kishan for grabbing his opportunity with both hands despite knowing that Rahul would be the first-choice keeper.
"They (India) are well stocked. They have got a couple of options there, obviously when KL was out with his injury, Ishan Kishan took his opportunity and played really well and now they find themselves in the team together so that's a wonderful case of taking an opportunity," said the Australian legend.
"Being positive and then and forcing the selectors into keeping you in the team so it seems like KL is gonna be the one who is going to continue with the gloves but it does not seem to hinder Ishan Kishan's batting, he seems to be playing really well, carefree, attacking and dangerous," he added.
(With PTI inputs)