Rishabh Pant was widely lauded for leading Delhi Capitals to victory over Dhoni’s Chennai Super Kings in his first IPL contest as a skipper on Saturday.
Rishabh Pant has, over the past few months, become a fan favourite. His consistency with the bat and improved wicketkeeping skills have become the talk of the town. Following Shreyas Iyer’s shoulder injury, the young cricketer was made in charge to lead the Delhi Capitals in the IPL 2021. Pant’s first IPL contest as skipper came against the mighty Chennai Super Kings led by veteran Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Saturday. The result? Roaring maiden success. Thanks to DC openers Prithvi Shaw and Shikhar Dhawan who went full guns blazing while chasing a steep target of 189 set by CSK.
While Shaw’s stunning assault of 72 off just 38 balls was laced with some outrageous shots and impeccable timing, Dhawan played an equally devastating 85 off just 54 deliveries as the opening pair accumulated 138 runs. With the match almost in their kitty, Pant, the captain, stayed unbeaten and added 15 runs to DC’s total thus steering his side to a 7-wicket-win (with 8 balls to spare) over CSK.
Pant was widely lauded for his captaincy skills by fans and followers. However, a photo of Pant returning to the dugout after winning the contest against CSK as the Yellow Army “escorted” him playfully caught the eye of social media on Sunday. Many fans called the moment “photo of the day” while others compared it to a photo of Pant partaking in a CSK team selfie from a previous season of IPL.
Meanwhile, Dhawan was all praises of his teammate and captain Pant.
“He (Rishabh Pant) did quite well. First of all, glad that he won the toss. It was a bit of a sticky wicket, so it was good for us to bat second. He kept his calm and kept on motivating the boys,” Dhawan said during the post-match press conference.”He made good changes as well. It was his first match (as captain), so I am sure it is only going to get refined from here. He has just started and with experience, I am sure, he is only going to get better.
“The best thing about Rishabh Pant is that he stays calm. His presence of mind is quite there, which is very very good.” Asked if he gives his advice to Pant as a senior player, Dhawan said: “…of course, I give my advice to him. The youngsters, whenever they come to me to ask for batting tips or mindset things, I always share my knowledge with them.”