Srikkanth wants match winner Pant in WC squad

Srikkanth wants match winner Pant in WC squad

Rishabh Pant

Although the Indian Premier League is commanding all the attention now, talks still revolve around on who the 15 should be in the World Cup-bound Indian team. While most members pick themselves, a couple of slots are still open for debate.

On Tuesday, on the sidelines of a promotional event, former captain and chairman of the selection committee Krishnamachari Srikkanth said to triumph in the showpiece event, teams need match winners and he sees one in dashing young wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant.

"I would want match winners in my team. World Cup team should consist of a few all-rounders, specialist top-order batsmen. I think top-order is sealed with Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli. You have wicketkeeper MS Dhoni. Only slot that's open for debate is No 4 slot. If I was the captain or chairman of selectors or Kapil Dev of 1983, I would go for a match winner. A guy who can win matches from no-win situation. We can't always have safe cricketers," said Srikkanth.

"Taking that into account while (MS) Dhoni will be the wicketkeeper, I still believe Rishabh Pant is a good cricketer. Don't forget, he's the guy who got runs in (England and Australia). He almost won a Test match for you in England from an amazing no-win situation. I think you should encourage him. You should just tell him 'Rishabh, you just play your game without worrying about failure. Don't worry, you are going to play all the games'. You give him that confidence, I think he'll win three matches on his own. Kapil told me "Cheeka, no rules for you, do whatever you want.' If he's given the freedom to play, he's capable of winning three matches single-handedly for you."