With Suryakumar Yadav batting like a dream and Virat Kohli reclaiming his best form, the Rohit Sharma-led Team India entered the T20 World Cup’s Super 12 round as one of the favorites to win the competition. India won Group 2 in the T20 World Cup after defeating archrival Pakistan in the tournament’s opening match by outclassing nations like the Netherlands, Bangladesh, and Zimbabwe.
The Rohit-led Team India fell short of expectations in the knockout round of the T20 World Cup despite their desire to break their ICC title drought. Team India, led by Virat Kohli, was eliminated from the ICC World T20 after an embarrassing loss to eventual champions England in the second semi-final. India scored a disappointing 168 runs but was unable to claim even one England wicket as Jos Buttler and Alex Hales bulldozed with their batting.
Former Indian cricketer Reetinder Sodhi pointed out Rishabh Pant’s subpar run in the game’s shortest format when discussing India’s performance at the ICC event. Pant struggled to make consistent appearances for the Men in Blue during his time in Australia as a wicketkeeper-batter. In the second semi-final between India and England at Adelaide Oval, Pant scored six runs off of four balls.
Before the opening ODI of the series between India and New Zealand, Sodhi supported Sanju Samson as Pant’s replacement in the Indian white-ball squad. Sodhi said, “He is becoming a liability for Team India. If it’s like this, then bring in Sanju Samson. End of the day, you got to take that chance because you cannot afford to lose and exit in World Cup or ICC tournaments. When you give too many chances, problems arise. The time has come to provide opportunities to new guys.”
He added, “Only time will tell how many opportunities and how long he gets. Time is passing and he has to tighten his shoes. Everything has a limit. You cannot depend on one player for so long. If he is not performing, you got to show him the exit door.”
While power hitter Samson has only been in 26 international white-ball games for the former world champions, Pant has played in 27 ODIs and 66 T20Is for India.