India's wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant. @ AFP
India’s wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant. @ AFP

Rishabh Pant has had a fabulous international career till date. The 21-year-old wicketkeeper-batsman, pitted as MS Dhoni’s successor, who made his Test debut in England this year, has already 346 runs to his name in five Tests at an average of 43.25.

Pant, who recently scored his maiden Twenty20 International half century in third and final match against West Indies at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai, has been fearless in his stroke-play and has the ability to score all round the ground. However, former India batsman VVS Laxman reckons that Pant must be not be brash with his strokes.

“Pant must understand that what is his strength can easily lead to his downfall if he is not careful. While it is imperative to embrace natural freedom, he will be well advised to play high-percentage strokes, more so when he is adept at doing so,” Laxman wrote in his column for the Times of India on Tuesday.

The Hyderabad batsman, who entertained fans with his glorious batting for over a decade, was happy to see opener Shikhar Dhawan among runs. The southpaw finally struck form after a string of poor scores in the ODI series.

Dhawan, who had scored 154 runs in the five ODIs at an average of 30.80, smashed a 62-ball 92 in Chennai on Sunday. “It was wonderful to see Shikhar get back among big runs ahead of the tour of Australia, and his partnership with young Rishabh Pant all but sealed the deal in Chennai,” Laxman wrote.

Talking about specialist death-overs bowler Jasprit Bumrah, he said: “Jasprit Bumrah was excellent as ever while Kuldeep Yadav is clearly among the best bowlers in white-ball cricket. What was pleasing was his control, even as he unfurled his vast bag of tricks. That the Windies batsmen had little clue which way the ball was turning was the perfect reflection of Kuldeep’s mastery over his craft.”