Sunil Gavaskar Settles Rishabh Pant vs Sanju Samson T20 World Cup Debate, Says: “Last Few Games…”

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Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar has opened up on the team’s playing combination for the T20 World Cup, as far as the wicketkeeping department is concerned. India have picked two wicketkeepers — Rishabh Pant and Sanju Samson — in the 15-man squad for the tournament. While Samson had good season with the bat in the Indian Premier League (IPL), Pant also made a sensational comeback to competitive cricket in the same tournament.

Weighing in on the debate as to who should be India’s first choice between the two, Gavaskar suggested that Pant should walk into the team on the basis of glovework.

“Yes, I think simply because if you compare the wicketkeeping abilities then Rishabh Pant is a better wicketkeeper than Samson. We’re not talking about batting here, the batting aspect also comes into play. But, Rishabh Pant in the last few matches has batted really well. On the other hand, Sanju Samson started the IPL season superbly, scored runs at will, hitting the ball to all corners of the ground,” Gavaskar said on Star Sports.

Gavaskar, however, suggested that the team management might also be looking at Pant as the first-choice keeper because of his recent form with the bat. He also pointed out that while Samson started IPL on a high, his form in the tournament’s latter stages declined.

“In the last two-three matches, he didn’t quite get runs. So this was an opportunity for him actually the match against Bangladesh. If he had scored about 50-60 then there would have been no question but I do feel that the Indian selection committee will look at having Rishabh Pant as the keeper,” he added.

Both Samson and Pant got some game time in India’s warm-up game against Bangladesh on Saturday. However, both endured contrasting outings with the bat.

While Samson scored a solitary run during his six-ball stay in the middle, Pant was the top-scorer in his first game in India colours in over 18 months.

The 26-year-old hit four sixes and as many 4s, smashing 53 off just 32 balls.

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