India wicket-keeper batsman Rishabh Pant

New Delhi [India], Dec 23 : India chief selector MSK Prasad said that Rishabh Pant’s batting performance in the recent series has improved but he needs to improve his wicket-keeping skills under the guidance of a specialist coach.

“With regard to Rishabh Pant, we have been backing him because of the phenomenal talent that he has. In the last series, we have seen glimpses of it. He is progressing well but needs to improve his wicket-keeping skills,” Prasad told reporters here.

“Probably, we gonna put him under the watchful eyes of specialist wicket-keeping coach and he will work on him,” he added.

The 22-year-old batsman added 118 runs in the ODI series against West Indies including a knock of 71 runs in the first ODI in Chennai.

Pant finds his spot in both squads for the upcoming series against Sri Lanka and Australia in the absence of Mahendra Singh Dhoni.

Opener Rohit Sharma and pacer Mohammed Shami have been rested for the Sri Lanka T20 series. In Shami’s absence, Shardul Thakur and Navdeep Saini get a spot in the side.

All-rounder Hardik Pandya is yet to make a comeback as he is not fully fit. Pandya underwent a lower-back surgery in London on October 5 after he complained of lower back pain after India’s final T20I against South Africa in Bengaluru on September 22.

“Navdeep Saini and Shardul Thakur come in for Shami and Deepak Chahar. Hardik Pandya is still not completely fit,” Prasad said.

India will host Sri Lanka for three T20Is and after that Australia will tour India to play three ODIs.

India recently won the T20I and ODI series against West Indies. India will play their first T20I against Sri Lanka at Guwahati on January 5, 2020.


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