The most awaited match of the Asia Cup 2022 is being played at the Dubai International Stadium. The biggest cricket rivals, India and Pakistan, will be locking horns after the T20 WC last year. While fans were all geared up for the match, what came as a shock was a missing Rishabh Pant on the team against Pakistan. From experts to fans, everyone questioned the decision of not playing Rishabh Pant against Pakistan in the Asia Cup 2022. Senior expert, Harsha Bhogle said, “Leaving out Rishabh Pant is a huge call and a sign towards the favored line-up at the T20 World Cup. It is also an acknowledgment of how India wants to play with DK as a power finisher. Don’t be surprised to see Jadeja at no 5 today, though.”
“It was a tough call we had to take between playing Dinesh [Karthik] and Rishabh [Pant]. Rishabh sadly misses out.”Rohit Sharma
Winning the toss, skipper Sharma announced the team. This statement clearly hinted that it is not an injury that is keeping him out, but a tactical measure. India decided to bowl first. Rishabh has been India’s all-format wicket-keeper ever since MS Dhoni retired. In addition, he has grown tremendously over the years, being able to run the game from behind the stumps. However, despite everything, Rishabh will be warming the bench while Dinesh Karthik was picked to do the glove duties. This looks like an attempt to try out players before India picks the T20 WC 2022 squad.
Why is Rishabh Pant not playing against Pakistan in Asia Cup 2022?
It has to be noted that Rishabh has been struggling with the bat in the shortest format of the game for more than a year now. While Rishabh has been proving his worth in Test cricket, his performances in T20s haven’t been good. On the other hand, Dinesh Karthik made a thrashing comeback in the IPL 2022, scoring runs with a strike rate of over 190. And this is most probably the reason Dinesh Karthik was picked up over Pant. This might bring depth to the batting order, given Rishabh’s current form. However, in the recent West Indies tour Rishabh seemed to have a good contact, scoring some crucial runs here and there.
It is interesting to see how India takes the ongoing Asia Cup 2022 as an opportunity to try and test both players.