Former India cricketer Surinder Khanna

New Delhi [India], Dec 21 : Former India cricketer Surinder Khanna on Saturday backed Rishabh Pant and said the wicket-keeper batsman needs to be given time in order to get him firing in all departments of the game.

Pant received flak for not scoring enough runs in this year’s T20I series against South Africa and Bangladesh. But he managed to changehis fortunes in the ODI series against West Indies, after scoring 110 runs in the first two matches.

“For me, he has always been the guy. He is young, you learn after committing mistakes. Give him time, in the last couple of innings, he has shown patience and has played well. You need to give him freedom, with experience you learn things,” Khanna told ANI.

India and West Indies will lock horns in the third and final ODI on Sunday at Cuttack. The series is currently levelled at 1-1.

Windies had won the first ODI by eight wickets while India managed to come out as triumphant by 107 runs in the second match of the series.

“Both teams will try to win the series. West Indies’ players have responded very well in the T20I and ODI series. In the second ODI, Indian top-order fired, Rahul and Rohit both played well. The match will be very exciting, the bowlers would be under pressure,” Khanna said.

“In the first match, our top-order was dismissed quite early, but still we reached a score of 280 plus. Bowlers and fielders let us down in the game, but you need to praise Windies batters Hetmyer and Hope. You have to new guys a chance to get them settled into the lineup,” added he.

Khanna also said that the spinners of the side need to be on the spot in the final match as Windies batters like to keep on going for big shots.

He also adviced players to keep full transparency about their injuries and should report them if the situation arises.

“Our spinners need to be on the spot. Windies batters like to go for big shots, everyone knows about this. In the first two matches, we have seen how they have played, so our side would go in with preparation,” Khanna said.

“Players should be honest if they are going through some injury. If you are carrying an injury, it might get aggravated if you keep on playing. The physio also needs to be honest, he should immediately send the player to rehab,” added he.


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