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T20 World Cup 2024

BCCI secretary Jay Shah: If Pant can keep, he can play the T20 World Cup

BCCI secretary Jay Shah says Rishabh Pant can play T20I World Cup "if he can keep"
by Wisden Staff 3 minute read

BCCI secretary Jay Shah has said that Rishabh Pant can make his much-awaited international comeback for India in the T20I World Cup in June “if he can keep [wickets]”.

Pant has not played competitive cricket ever since the near-fatal car crash in December 2022. He had to undergo ligament reconstruction on his right knee besides healing a fractured ankle and wrist.

“He is batting well, he is keeping well. We will declare him fit very soon,” Shah told PTI. “If he can play the T20 World Cup for us, that will be a big thing for us. He is a big asset for us. If he can keep, he can play the World Cup. Let’s see how he does in the IPL.”

Currently in rehab at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru, Pant is expected to participate in IPL 2024, as confirmed by his franchise Delhi Capitals’ head coach Ricky Ponting. He was also seen wicketkeeping and batting in the nets.

Pant has scored 2838 runs in the IPL so far while averaging 34.61 and striking at 147.97. But counterintuitively his T20I numbers – 987 runs at 22.43 and 126.54– leave a lot to be desired. During the 2022 T20 World Cup in Australia, he didn’t start in India’s playing XI for the initial four matches with Dinesh Karthik preferred over him.

Shah also gave updates on Mohammed Shami and KL Rahul. Shami has been out of action since the 2023 World Cup due to an ankle injury and is set to miss the upcoming IPL as well.

“Shami’s [ankle] surgery is done, he is back in India. Shami’s return is likely for the home series against Bangladesh,” Shah said.

Speaking on KL Rahul, who missed the last four Tests against England due to pain in his right quadriceps, Shah revealed that “he has started rehab and is at the NCA.” Rahul is expected to captain Lucknow Super Giants in the IPL this year.

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