Mumbai: Former India wicket-keeper Parthiv Patel picked Rishabh Pant as the X-factor for the Delhi Capitals side and said he is a brilliant player who can be better than former skipper MS Dhoni.
Pant had a great last year in the IPL which saw him earn a spot in the Indian team.
Pant has not looked back since.
He made the most of his opportunities, be it Test cricket, ODIs, or T20Is. He was also named as the captain of the Capitals’ squad for this season.
Speaking on Star Sports’ show Game Plan, Parthiv Patel said, “I think Rishabh Pant carries a lot of confidence with him and that’s what you want when you are playing a T20 game. You don’t want any doubts in your mind and especially a player like Rishabh Pant. He was burdened with the comparison of MS Dhoni and he also tried to do that, but he himself is a brilliant player. He doesn’t have to worry about being like MS Dhoni. He can be better than MS Dhoni or he can win matches on his own every given time. So, I think Rishabh Pant will probably hold the key for Delhi Capitals.”
Parthiv further analysed the Mumbai Indians’ team for IPL 2021 and said, “I don’t think Mumbai Indians will be thinking of where they are playing next. All the teams would be thinking about where they are playing first and you know, try and get their best team forward, try and get their best XI on path.
“If they are playing in Chennai, you might expect some spinner but from the Mumbai Indians point of view, I don’t think they have to tinker a lot with their playing XI because Hardik Pandya is bowling quite a bit now, almost bowling 4 overs, Pollard bowls his slower ones really well, which might be useful on a Chennai wicket. And obviously, Rahul Chahar had an outstanding IPL, a couple of outstanding IPLs and hence, he was picked for India. Krunal Pandya’s 4 overs, his form in domestic cricket, so I can go on and on about it,” he added.
When asked about his thoughts on whether Royal Challengers Bangalore will have the right start in the IPL, he said, “It all matters how you are ending the tournament, doesn’t it? I think we have seen Mumbai Indians so many times, not starting the tournament well, but picking at the right time, but once they get to the business end of the tournament, you know if they have to win five out of five, they have the team to go win it in Kolkata.
“But I think there were a lot of questions to be answered in the auction, but I don’t think they have answered those questions. Just because they were not expecting it to go out of Bangalore. Hence, Moeen Ali went. If Moeen Ali was there, it would have been a different XI altogether. And one player actually can change the composition of the XI. As he rightly said, attention was to try to get away from ABD and Virat, but how much attention they are trying to win it away inside the team will matter the most and not outside of the team,” he added.
The IPL 2021 is slated to begin on April 9 with Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore locking horns in the tournament opener.