Rishabh Pant, the Delhi Capitals’ new captain for the IPL 2021 season, has shared his enthusiasm at the prospect of leading his team against his mentor Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s Chennai Super Kings in their first match on April 10. Since his T20I debut in 2017, the 23-year-old highly-rated wicketkeeper-batsman has learned the ropes under the tutelage of former captain MS Dhoni. Pant and KL Rahul have largely been India’s first-choice wicketkeepers in all formats since Dhoni’s retirement.
Pant went into great detail about his ability to outsmart his tutor by using Dhoni’s teachings. In a press release released by his team, the DC captain was quoted as saying, “Mahi (MS Dhoni) bhai will be my first opponent as captain. It would be a beneficial experience for me and I have gained a lot of knowledge from him. As a player, I’ve had my own experiences… I’ll use my own background as well as what MS Dhoni has taught me to try something new against CSK.”
📹 | @RishabhPant17 brought a lot of positive energy to his first interview as captain 🤩— Delhi Capitals (@DelhiCapitals) April 6, 2021
P.S. #RP17 is all set for the first game against mentor and friend, @msdhoni 💙💛#YehHaiNayiDilli #DCAllAccess @OctaFX pic.twitter.com/D3zrquEf1C
With his gutsy batting and vastly improved keeping, the effervescent youngster has had a roller-coaster ride in international cricket, earning fame and respect in recent months.
He is always compared to Dhoni, but he has insisted that he wants to carve out his own niche, even though he does seek guidance and mentorship from the senior player. Pant, who has 2,079 runs in 68 IPL games, said he will work hard to help DC win their first IPL title.
“I’m eager to make the most of this moment. We have yet to win a championship, and I will do everything in my power to win one this year. Since the last two or three years, we’ve been playing well as a band, and our plans are going well… All seems to be in a good mood. Everyone is giving it their all and is enjoying themselves in the squad atmosphere, which is just what you want as a captain.”
He praised head coach Ricky Ponting’s optimistic impact and the wealth of experience he brings to the table as a former player and manager, which he believes will help them win their first IPL trophy.