World Cup 2019: Rishabh Pant officially confirmed as Shikhar Dhawan’s replacement

first_imgWicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant has been officially confirmed by the International Cricket Council (ICC) as the replacement of India opener Shikhar Dhawan, who has been ruled out of the World Cup 2019 with a broken thumb.Team India players were seen hard at practice at Southampton on Wednesday preparing for their next challenge against Afghanistan in the World Cup 2019.Captain Virat Kohli led the way in the nets, spending a lot of time honing his skills with the bat while all-rounder Vijay Shankar was seen rolling his arms over along with Jasprit Bumrah. Pant also joined the session along with Mohammed Shami, who was training at full tilt at the Ageas Bowl.The Indian team will be facing Afghanistan in their fifth match of the tournament on Saturday (June 22) and will be without the services of two key players in Shikhar Dhawan and Bhuvneshwar Kumar.Dhawan was on Wednesday, ruled out for the rest of the tournament with a thumb fracture while Bhuvi will miss the next three games due to a hamstring injury.#TeamIndia gearing up for the game against Afghanistan (@BCCI) June 19, 2019Rishabh Pant was drafted into the 15-member squad as the official replacement for Dhawan but whether he gets to play in Southampton or the Indian team sticks with the winning combination remains to be seen. Shami meanwhile, is going to replace Bhuvneshwar in the playing XI for the next few games.One thing is for certain, the players are not going to take their foot off the pedal and not take Afghanistan lightly by any means even though all the players are in good form in the Indian team.advertisementSpeaking to Pakistan great Wasim Akram for the ICC, Kohli pointed out it’s difficult to gain momentum in a tournament like the World Cup and every game gives the Indian team an opportunity to execute their plans to perfection.Training #TeamIndia batsman @klrahul11 having a go at in the nets today. (@BCCI) June 19, 2019India are well-placed to reach the semi-final of World Cup 2019, having won 3 out of their first 4 matches by comfortable margins. India thrashed arch-rivals Pakistan by 89 runs (DLS) on Sunday in Manchester and are now on a 5-day break before their next match against Afghanistan.”For sure (take Afghanistan seriously). It’s very difficult to gain momentum in a tournament like the World Cup. We want to win every game we play. And the fact that we have long gaps between each game.. that helps a lot. We have time to recover, regroup and then the motivation is back again. No game is easy in this World Cup. We have to be professional and execute our plans well,” Virat Kohli said.The weather in Southampton will also be closely monitored by both the teams on Saturday with overcast weather likely to stay throughout the game.The conditions will remain mostly sunny till 12 PM BST (4.30 PM IST) after which it will turn cloudy but chances of rain are quite less at the moment.Also Read | World Cup 2019: India won’t take Afghanistan or any other team lightly, says Virat KohliAlso Read | Shikhar Dhawan out of World Cup 2019, Rishabh Pant named replacementAlso Seelast_img read more