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In Virat Kohli’s absence, Rishabh Pant has to come in, says Ricky Ponting

December 21, 2020

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Ricky Ponting believes that in the absence of Kohli, India needs a player like Pant to step in. He can be the perfect player for the side to strengthen the middle-order department.

Former Australian captain also believes that the visitors will have to lift their spirits ahead of the boxing day Test. India faced an embarrassing defeat in the Adelaide Test. However, the absence of Kohli in the last three games is going to make things more difficult for India.

Virat will no longer be a part of the squad against Australia further as he would be heading back to India on paternity leave for the birth of their first child.

Adding to India’s sorrow, their pace bowler Shami has also been ruled out of the series after sustaining an injury. Team India is likely to make several changes ahead of the second Test in Melbourne, starting from December 26.

Ponting speaks about the absence of Kohli for the last three Tests

Ricky Ponting mentioned that with Kohli not being there as well, there would be almost no-one to back the team after a loss like that. The visitors have got to make a couple of changes before the second encounter.

Pant has to be in that middle-order batsman after the departure of Kohli. As Kohli will not be there for the upcoming matches, India has to strengthen their batting line-up.

The 46-year-old further stated that he is sure, but there is one thing to make selection changes right. There should be players who can lift the spirits back up again. Also, they should make sure that they are mentally fit for the next challenge.

Pant was a crucial player for India during the Border Gavaskar Trophy back in 2018-19. The Indian team scripted history by winning the Test series for the first time by 2-1 on the Australian backyard. The young wicketkeeper-batsman produced an outstanding century in the second practice game against Australia A to fix a spot for himself in the playing XI.

However, the management selectors showed faith in their experienced keeper, Saha, for the first pink-ball Test in Adelaide. However, Saha failed to impress with both the gloves and the bat in the Adelaide Test. Hence, it is understood that Saha will not be a part of the team for the upcoming game on December 26.

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