South Africa T20s: MS Dhoni unlikely as selectors ready to persist with Rishabh Pant

While Pant remains the first choice across formats, the selectors are also factoring in the fitness and workload management.

Published: 28th August 2019 03:26 PM  |   Last Updated: 28th August 2019 03:26 PM   |  A+A-

India's Rishabh Pant (L) is watched by Mahendra Singh Dhoni during a training session. (Photo | AFP)

India's Rishabh Pant (L) is watched by Mahendra Singh Dhoni during a training session. (Photo | AFP)

By PTI

NEW DELHI: Mahendra Singh Dhoni may have put his international retirement on hold but he is unlikely to be selected for India's three-match T20 home series against South Africa starting September 15 in Dharamsala.

The team for the series is expected to be picked on September 4.

The remaining two games will be played at Mohali (September 18) and Bengaluru (September 22).

In all likelihood, the squad that blanked West Indies 3-0 is likely to be retained (subject to fitness) and the selection committee wants to continue building towards World T20 in Australia in October 2020.

"There are only 22 T20 Internationals before India play their first World T20 game and selectors are clear in their vision that it's time to move forward," a senior BCCI official privy to developments in selection committee told PTI on Wednesday.

"They are planning on getting a pool of three keepers ready for limited overs, especially T20s," he added.

It is still not clear whether the BCCI brass or the selection committee will speak to Dhoni to enquire about his plans like they did before the West Indies tour when the former captain informed that he would be taking a break to serve his regiment in Territorial Army.

"Retirement is an individual decision and selectors or for that matter, no one has any right to decide on that front. But they have every right to decide the roadmap for the 2020 World T20 and that's to give Rishabh Pant maximum chances," the official explained.

It is learnt that the second and third option for the selection committee is Sanju Samson, whose batting is considered to be on par with Pant and India A regular Ishan Kishan.

While Pant remains the first choice across formats, the selectors are also factoring in the fitness and workload management.

A few members of the selection committee will be in Thiruvananthapuram for the A series and Samson's performance will be keenly watched as he has made the squad for the last two List A games.

As far as batting is concerned, the selection committee believes that Samson is ready for top level cricket but his wicket-keeping is still work in progress.

"Pant scored a fifty in the last T20 that he played. Ishan Kishan is in the A set-up. Do we even have an option of looking back when we need consistent big hitters on big Australian grounds?" the official questioned.

Stay up to date on all the latest Cricket news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp