“He is a cultural leader”: Ricky Ponting wants Rishabh Pant to be in Delhi Capitals dugout during the matches in IPL 2023

Xtra Time Web Desk: Former Australia captain and currently Head Coach of Delhi Capitals wants star India wicket-keeper batter Rishabh Pant in the dug-out during IPL 2023. Pant, who is the captain of Delhi Capitals will miss the upcoming edition of cash rich league as he recovering after a horrific road accident on December 30. According to Ponting, Rishabh is a ‘cultural leader’ in the DC team and for that reason he wants to be with the team in the dug-out in the upcoming IPL 2023 season. Pant is currently recovering after undergoing a series of surgeries in Mumbai.

“If he’s actually not physically fit enough to play, we’d still love to have him around. He’s the sort of cultural leader around the group, being the captain, and that attitude and infectious smile and laugh he has is what we all love so much about him,” Ponting said in an interview on the ICC Review.

Ponting went on to add, “If he’s actually able to travel and be around the team, then I want him sitting beside me in the dugout every day of the week. I’ll certainly be making sure, come the middle of March when we get together in Delhi and start our camps and stuff, if he’s able to be there, then I want him around the whole time,” the former Australia captain said. 

The former Australian great believes India will miss Pant badly in the upcoming four-Test series against Australia.

“I think he’s ranked in the top six-seven Test batsmen in the world, isn’t he? When he first started, we probably all thought he was going to be a better T20 and one-day batsman than a Test batsman, but it’s actually worked the other way. His Test cricket has been remarkable…we know how he played against Australia in Australia last time.”