Young India wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant must be rearing to showcase his skills in the three-T20I series against New Zealand in a bid to present his contention for the upcoming ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 in England.
Risabh Pant was rested for the ODI series against Australia and New Zealand which Team India won convincingly. The left-handed Delhi opener is back into the squad for the T20I series in the Kiwiland.
The preceding ODI series solved a part of the puzzle as India look to finalise their 15 for the World Cup. But there are still a few spots up for grabs and the T20 series can help the team management zero in on the squad for the mega event in England in May-July.
Batsman Rishabh Pant, who was not part of the ODIs, returns hungrier and has a big opportunity to stake a claim for a World Cup spot in the upcoming three T20s.
Cricket Veteran Mahendra Singh Dhoni is back in the T20 mix after being omitted from the series against Australia last year and his performance will also be keenly followed. He last played a T20 in July.
Following the high of the Test series Down Under, another stellar showing might just convince the selectors to include Pant in the final 15.
Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar has already opined that Pant must be given a chance in the T20I series against the Kiwis and in the subsequent ODI series against the Aussies at home.
Senior India opener, Shikhar Dhawan, too praised his young teammate for his quality to change the course of the game in no time.
“He is an aggressive batsman, an asset for the team, can take away games from the opposition in a very short time. I hope he grabs this opportunity (in T20s) with both hands,” said Dhawan
While regular skipper Virat Kohli is getting the much-needed rest, the Rohit Sharma-led squad will be hoping it has enough left in the tank to record a maiden T20 series win in New Zealand, following a record 4-1 result in ODIs and a historic tour of Australia.