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‘His Hard Work Is Paying Him’: DC Batting Coach’s Ultimate Praise For Rishabh Pant

The swashbuckling Rishabh Pant has showed with his scintillating knock against Gujarat Titans that he is ready to roar in the upcoming T20 World Cup, feels Delhi Capitals’ batting coach Pravin Amre. A month after returning to competitive cricket after recovering from the multiple injuries sustained during a horrific car accident in December 2022, Pant virtually sealed his spot as India’s first choice wicketkeeper for the T20 World Cup with an unbeaten 88 off 43 balls in DC’s four-run win over GT in an IPL match on Wednesday.

Skipper Pant and Axar Patel (66 off 43) forged a brisk 113-run stand off 68 balls to power DC to 224/4 after they were reeling at 44/3 in their must-win game.

“He (pant) started with a two-week camp in Vizag, he came there, he prepared himself very well. I remember when he came for the Vizag camp, he came straight to the ground from the airport.

“He was hungry and made sure everyday he is going to utilise. It is all about his hard work, which is paying him,” Amre said at the post-match press conference.

“And obviously a couple of good knocks gave him the confidence and today we saw a special knock. Finishing was important, and we saw how Rishabh single-handedly got 31 runs against an experienced bowler (Mohit Sharma), and that really says that he is in good form.” Amre also praised Axar, who made the opportunity count after being promoted to the No.3 spot.

“If you remember last year year he (Axar) was the one who was striking well and this season, he batted in the last 4-5 overs, so it wasn’t fair. So the whole idea was to give some chance.

“Axar played very well, but the partnership he had with Rishabh was striking. We were also struggling, like 46 odd runs we got in the powerplay with three wickets down.

“Axar has shown and that (partnership) was the reason that we got 96 runs in the last 5 overs,” he said.

Talking about the match, Amre said Pant’s power-hitting in the last five overs made the difference.

“In the first half it never looked like we could get 180 but from there (44/3 in 5.4 overs), we managed to score that 20 runs extra. Ultimately, they came very close but in this format, even a one-run win is a victory for us.

“Our target was 180, but Rishabh was confident and he single-handedly batted very well in the last 5 overs. Mohit is an experienced bowler and to get 31 runs off the last over made the impact,” he said.

GT spinner Sai Kishore too agreed that the partnership between Pant and Axar made the difference in the end.

“Axar and Pant batted really well. Rishabh scored a lot of boundaries off good balls, not necessarily sixes, but fours as well.

“That got them the momentum and in the last 2 to 3 overs, we conceded more sixes than fours and that resulted in the game going out of hands,” Kishore said.

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