Rishabh Pant deserved to be picked for 2019 World Cup as batsman, says Pakistan icon Saeed Ajmal

Ajit Vijaykumar 22:16 26/04/2019
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Rishabh Pant.

Former Pakistan spinner Saeed Ajmal said Indian selectors should have picked hard-hitting Rishabh Pant purely as a batsman for the 2019 World Cup.

The non-selection of Pant created a furore in India as he can not only hit the long ball but also offers variety as a left-handed batsman. However, Indian selectors went with the experienced Dinesh Karthik as back-up wicketkeeper for veteran MS Dhoni while picking Vijay Shankar as the No4 batsman.

Ajmal said Pant has brought about a new energy in the Indian team and should have been picked for the 50-over tournament.

“India have a strong bench. Pant is a very good batsman. He has been batting very well in the IPL,” Ajmal told Sport360.

“He has brought new life in the Indian team. Pant should have been picked as a batsman. But the selectors must have spotted some weakness,” the off-spinner said at King’s School Al Barsha in Dubai on Friday where his Saeed Ajmal International Cricket Academy played the Kings’ Cricket Academy.

Ajmal, who picked hosts England and New Zealand as two dangerous teams at the World Cup, said Pakistan need to put in extra effort to defeat India in the much-awaited June 16 World Cup clash. The men in green have never defeated India in six World Cup games.

“I will never talk about the past, always look at the future. Ok, Pakistan haven’t beaten India before. They will need to put in extra effort as India are a very good team. Good luck to both teams,” he added.

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