Ahead of the South Africa series, India head coach Ravi Shastri had said that there will a rap on the knuckles if Pant plays a bad shot. ©AFP

Ahead of the third and final T20I against South Africa at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru on Sunday, former India pacer Ajit Agarkar has thrown his weight behind under-fire Rishabh Pant.

The Indian wicketkeeper-batsman has come under the scrutiny following his below-par performances in the recent times. His four-run innings during the second T20I of the series did not help the matters either.

On Saturday, Agarkar said that the left-hander has been put under some unnecessary pressure, something that the former India pacer said, he fails to understand.

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“I cannot believe that there is so much talk around a guy who has two Test hundreds away from India and who can play impactful innings. T20 can sometimes get you into trouble because you have to play shots and the ball was there to be hit, only the execution was not probably to what he would have liked,” Agarkar was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.

“You also need to decide what you need from him. Do you want him to be a number 4 batsman who bats through the innings or you want him to be that impactful player and you are ready for those sorts of dismissals? But there is too much talk of it,” added Agarkar.

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Ahead of the series, Ravi Shastri, India’s head coach, had stated that there will be a rap on the knuckles if Pant plays a bad shot. While batting coach Vikram Rathour has urged Pant and the other Indian batsmen to play fearless and not careless cricket, Delhi’s bowling coach Rajkumar Sharma said that he is worried about Pant.

“Maybe Shreyas Iyer, who has shown some good form, can come at No.4 and Pant could be dropped down the order and be asked to play freely. India can take pressure of him. There is some unnecessary pressure put on that guy who is very young in his international career and has the potential to win games for India,” concluded Agarkar.