Former Australia wicketkepeer Adam Gilchrist has revealed his pick among the two star wicketkeepers in India's T20I starting XI.
India named their ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022 squad with both Rishabh Pant and Dinesh Karthik among the 15 players flying to Australia. In a star-studded batting line-up, there might, however, be room for only one of them.
Pant, being the only left-hander in India's top six batting options for the tournament, has a distinct advantage. But his underwhelming record in T20Is, combined with Dinesh Karthik's rise as a finisher, could count against Pant.
Fox Cricket commentator Gilchrist, though, threw his weight behind Pant, stating that he thinks the southpaw should "definitely" be in the XI.
"The dare of Rishabh Pant and the courage for him, the way in which he takes on bowling attacks," Gilchrist said.
"I think he’s got to be a must in that Indian line-up. They can play together, but I think Rishabh Pant has definitely got to be in there."
Pant has 934 runs in 58 T20Is at an average of 23.94 and a strike-rate of 126.21. The highly rated wicketkeeper batter hasn't quite had the success expected of him in this format.
Karthik, on the other hand, has turned into a very successful finisher with memorable performances in the Indian Premier League and he has forced his way back into India's T20I team and found a place in the T20 World Cup squad.
The Australia legend mentioned his liking for Karthik's "versatility" and did not rule out having the two of them in the same line-up.
"It’ll be interesting to see if they can both play in the same team. I think they can. What they bring to a team … the versatility of Dinesh Karthik, he can play at the top of the order, he can, as he has done more so later in his career, be in the middle and late overs to finish. He has a really nice touch game."
THIS IS THE BIG TIME!
The ICC Men’s T20 World Cup is coming to Australia from 16 October to 13 November 2022.