Determined Pant reflects on successful comeback with T20 World Cup looming

Rishabh Pant had a successful return to cricket in the Indian Premier League after a long injury layoff.

Rishabh Pant's return to competitive cricket has been nothing short of remarkable, following a gruelling 14-month hiatus due to a near-fatal accident in December 2022.

This period of absence meant Pant missed out on several significant tournaments, including the IPL 2023, World Test Championship 2023 Final and the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 at home.

In the latest edition of the ICC Review, Delhi Capitals coach and ICC Hall of Famer Ricky Ponting gives his insight on how wicket-keeper/batter Rishabh Pant will reintegrate into the IPL setup.

Now, at 26 years old, Pant has made a triumphant return and appears to be back to peak fitness after completing a full season with the Delhi Capitals in the Indian Premier League.

Reflecting on his journey back to the field after Delhi's final game of the season against the Lucknow Supergiants, Pant expressed his gratitude for the unwavering support he received from fans across India.

"I think personally it was fantastic to come back on the field. The kind of support I got from whole India I would say was heartening to see," Pant told the broadcasters after Delhi's last game of the season. "Wherever I went to play, I got support from each and every person. That was really good to see.

While it took Pant a few games to shake off the rust, he quickly regained his form with the bat and emerged as his team's top run-scorer, amassing 446 runs in 13 matches at an impressive strike rate of 155.40.

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His stellar performance throughout the season not only contributed to his team's success but also paved the way for a national comeback as he was picked in the India squad for the upcoming ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024.

"Everyone knew that I am playing after one-and-a-half years so it was a long time to wait outside the ground,” Pant continued. “Loved every bit of it, just coming onto the ground, I just don't want to stay away from the ground, want to stay on the field all the time."

Pant is expected to be India’s first-choice wicket-keeper in the T20 World Cup ahead of Sanju Samson.

India's campaign begins on 5 June with their opening Group A clash against Ireland before they take on Pakistan in a much-awaited clash in New York. The Men in Blue will round off their group stage fixtures against USA (12 June) and Canada (15 June.)

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NewsICC Men's T20 World Cup, 2024Rishabh Pant 10/04/1997India