Saha plays down India wicket-keeper rivalry with Pant

Duo battling for Test place

Cricket Fans India

Wriddhiman Saha has brushed off suggestions of a rivalry between himself and fellow India wicket-keeper Rishabh Pant.

Both men continue to battle it out for the right to wear the gloves for the national team. However, Saha insists the duo are happy to work together and that the team always comes first.

Pant was chosen ahead of Saha in the first Test against New Zealand last month, despite the more experienced man doing well in the preceding home series’ against South Africa and Bangladesh. India went on to lose the series 2-0 in New Zealand to fire up a discussion about who should be behind the stumps moving forward.

Saha helping Pant improve

Saha, 35, has said he gets on well with Pant and that he is even helping him to improve his game.

He said: “We keep joking around. We train together and we keep talking about the game. He always tries to give his best. I have told Rishabh a few things which he will try according to his comfort zone. He will try during training. It’s not like he will do it for one day and it will work. So, if he feels those things will work for him, he will try and implement them in his training,” said Saha to NDTV Sports.

“It’s not like tips. It’s a discussion. I have told him these are things I follow and it makes my job easier. You can also try them and see if it works for you. See it’s very personal. But yes, we do discuss wicketkeeping.”

India comes first over individual glory

When being asked about his recent exclusion, Saha added: “We all play for India. The team decides the best combination and we have to respect that. I had played the last series, he (Rishabh) did not play. In New Zealand, he played and I did not. Individually, yes we all expect to play. But ultimately the team is first.”

Meanwhile, Saha is due to play for the Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League if this year’s tournament goes ahead. The start of the tournament has currently been delayed due to the Coronavirus outbreak.

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