Rishabh Pant had a sudden opportunity coming his way to feature in the World Cup 2019 after seasoned opener Shikhar Dhawan sustained an injury in his thumb during the match against Australia at the Oval on Sunday. The young wicket-keeper-batsman was asked to join the squad at the earliest even while Dhawan was kept along for monitoring his recovery.
Pant, who missed out from earning a berth in the 15-man squad announced in April, will leave for England early on Thursday as cover for Dhawan. Meanwhile, pacer Deepak Chahar said that head coach Ravi Shastri told him to remain prepared as well for he might get a call-up in case there is more injury.
The 26-year-old pacer, who had a fruitful outing in the Indian Premier League (IPL) this year for Chennai Super Kings, was taken to England as one of the net bowlers to give the World Cup squad practice. And just when he was packing his bags for returning home after finishing his assignment, Shastri told him the same.
“I met everyone before leaving. I was praised by Ravi sir. He praised me and said you have done a great job. He also said — be prepared, you might get a call-up if there’s an injury,” Timesofindia.com quoted Chahar as saying in an exclusive interview.
Deepak Chahar was with the Indian team in England as a net bowler
Chahar was in England along with Khaleel Ahmed, Avesh Khan and Navdeep Saini to give practice to the Indian batters ahead of the marquee tournament. Chahar said he was chosen for his ability to swing the ball and having experience of playing in England. He said he was asked to bowl in-swingers and out-swingers to the top order batsmen, especially captain Virat Kohli, who he said played his deliveries well.
The Indian pace attack in England comprises Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Mohammed Shami as the main ones with Hardik Pandya and Vijay Shankar as the second-rung ones. Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar have done a good job so far while Shami and Shankar are yet to play a game. In the spinning department, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja complete the trio.