Mumbai: Former India opener Virender Sehwag has backed MS Dhoni over Rishab Pant to don the wicketkeeping gloves till the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 in England.
Pant, who has not featured for India in an ODI, has played four T20Is and three Tests.
“In my personal opinion, MS Dhoni should continue till the 2019 World Cup. Even if you play Pant in ODIs from now, he won't be able to play more than 15-16 ODIs till the World Cup which is far less compared to Dhoni, who has played over 300 ODIs. I would want Dhoni to continue till the World Cup," Sehwag was quoted saying by India TV.
However, he did back Pant to take over the keeping duties from Dhoni once when the latter retires from limited-overs cricket.
"Pant is someone who can hit sixes at his will, but when you talk about Dhoni, he has won matches single-handedly for the country. So Pant has the right kind of the temperament to be a perfect heir for him. I want Dhoni to hand the baton to Pant when he hangs his boots," he added.
Pant was part of India’s squad for the third, fourth and fifth Tests against England. Despite India losing 1-4 to Joe Root’s men, Pant played an innings of 114 runs in the second innings of the fifth Test.
The visitors, however, went onto lose the game by 118 runs in what was Alastair Cook’s final match for England.