Legendary Australian spinner Shane Warne wants young Team India wicket-keeper batsman Rishabh Pant to open innings with hitman Rohit Sharma. The Australian also opined that Rishabh Pant can play as a specialist batsman considering MS Dhoni would keep the wickets for India.
Warne also backed Pant to seal his place in the team’s squad for the upcoming ICC World Cup 2019, which will be held at England.
“There has been talk if Rishabh Pant can play in the side. I think Dhoni and Pant both can play. I can’t see why Rishabh Pant can’t play as a batsman, he is outstanding,” Warne told India Today.
Warne further said, “Maybe even open the batting with Rohit Sharma. I know Shikhar Dhawan does a great job but Rishabh Pant opening the batting with Rohit Sharma could be pretty cool too for India. Go with some of these X-factor type things and tactical battles, where you surprise the opposition.”
Speaking about Australia’s upcoming tour to India, Warne said India could tinker with their top-order in the forthcoming series. Warne, who is also Australia’s leading wicket-keeper of all time in Test cricket, feels that Pant should be given a chance at the top against Aaron Finch’s troops.
“It could be worth throwing Rishabh Pant at the top of the order for a couple of games and see how he goes. Maybe against Australia now and experiment and see how he goes for the World Cup. Dhawan may have a role to play somewhere else. But I am really looking forward to seeing what India have because they have a lot of players who can do a lot of roles,” Warne added.
Team India are slated to play two T20Is against Australia followed by five-match ODI series.