IPL 2020: Pant shares his strategy for first encounter with his ‘Guru’

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Rishabh Pant is all charged up for the upcoming Indian Premier League. The debut as an IPL captain is going to be baptism by fire for the Delhi Capitals wicketkeeper-batsman. Pant’s first test comes against the man-possessed Mahendra Singh Dhoni, the veteran also being his ‘Guru’ in the world of elite competitive cricket.

“My first match as Captain will be against Mahi (MS Dhoni) bhai. It will be a good experience for me as I have learned a lot from him. I have my own experience as a player as well. I’ll apply my own experience and the learnings from MS Dhoni, and try to do something different against CSK,” said the Delhi Capitals skipper, preparing for the date with Chennai Super Kings at the Wankhede Stadium on Saturday, April 10.

Pant, in tremendous form with the bat while also displaying remarkable improvement behind the stumps, is excited to lead the Delhi Capitals, a challenge thrown at him following the unwarranted exit of regular skipper Shreyas Iyer. The veteran of 68 IPL matches, with 2,079 runs under his belt, was excited to lead the Delhi Capitals and looking forward to making the most of the opportunity.

“I would like to thank all the coaches and the owners for giving me this opportunity and I am looking forward to making most of this opportunity. We haven’t won a title yet and I will try my level best to get a title this year. We’ve been playing nicely as a team from last two-three years and our preparations are going on well. Everyone looks in great frame of mind. Everyone is giving their 100 percent and is happy in the team environment, and that’s what you want as a Captain,” said the 23-year-old.

When asked about the influence of Head Coach Ricky Ponting on the team, Pant said, “He (Ponting) has been so amazing for us in the last two-three years. He brings energy to the team and as a player when you see your coach and you’re thinking this is the man from whom you can learn a lot. Then nothing is better than that. Hopefully, we will cross the line this year, with the help of Ricky and the whole team.”

Pant for now is focused to go toe-to-toe against MS Dhoni in the teams’ season opener at the Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai on 10 April 2021.

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