Cricket News Today: Ravi Shastri hints MS Dhoni might walk away after IPL, Rishabh Pant not a natural keeper and more - 25th January, 2020

Shashwat Kumar

Will Dhoni don Indian colours again?

Hello and welcome to the daily roundup of all the intriguing sub-plots dominating the world of cricket on the 25th of January, 2020.

On Saturday, Ravi Shastri opened up on MS Dhoni’s possible international retirement and talked about how the upcoming Indian Premier League could have a significant bearing on the same.

Additionally, the Indian head coach talked about Rishabh Pant and his suitability to function as the side’s primary wicket-keeper, whereas BCCI President, Sourav Ganguly also weighed in on that particular debate.

Furthermore, AB de Villiers was seen honing his wicket-keeping skills in a pre-match drill before the Brisbane Heat’s Big Bash League whereas England became the first side in the history of Test cricket to amass 5,00,000 runs.

Here is a look at the aforementioned narratives in more detail.

#1 Ravi Shastri hints MS Dhoni might walk away after the IPL

Dhoni's future is still up in the air

Since India were ousted from the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup by New Zealand, the cricketing fraternity has been left guessing about MS Dhoni’s international future. The wicket-keeper, who tragically fell short at the final hurdle in Manchester, has been tight-lipped regarding his potential involvement with the national side.

On Saturday, Ravi Shastri, the Indian coach, provided his two cents on the matter, stating that that particular decision could well boil down to how Dhoni feels in the IPL, which is slated to start in a couple of months’ time. Shastri quippe

There is IPL coming. Uske baad tum dekho. Everyone will know. (Then you'll see. Everyone will know) He will know, selectors will know, the captain will know seeing him, and more important than anything else he will know. What I'm trying to tell the people is he is the last person to impose himself on anything. You know him. I know him.

For years, you know that he's been dead honest when it comes to things of that sort, like when he gave up Test cricket. I don't know if he started practising as yet or not, but I'm sure if he's keen on the IPL, everything will come out now and he will be ready. For all you know, he may start the IPL, if he doesn’t feel good he’ll say ‘Thank you very much.

Read the full article here: Ravi Shastri discusses MS Dhoni's future; hints he might walk away after the IPL

#2 Rishabh Pant not a natural keeper, says Ravi Shastri

Pant's keeping has been under the scanner recently

Rishabh Pant has undergone an enormous amount of trials and tribulations since his introduction to international cricket. Long earmarked as MS Dhoni’s successor, the youngster has had his performances scrutinised significantly, meaning that he has often frustrated the masses more than mesmerising them.

To add to his woes, he has lost his Test and limited-overs spot in recent months to Wriddhiman Saha and KL Rahul, respectively. And, on Saturday, Ravi Shastri opened up on how Pant was not a natural keeper and how he needed to improve his keeping considerably.

He has to work really hard on his wicketkeeping. He is not a natural keeper but he's got all that talent which goes to waste if he doesn't work on his keeping. I think he has realised that and if you see him now, he is working extremely hard on his keeping as well.

Read the full article here: Rishabh Pant's spot in danger? Coach Ravi Shastri says not a natural wicket-keeper

#3 Ganguly says Kohli and Shastri will decide between Rahul and Pant

Ganguly weighed in on the Pant vs Rahul debate

In the first ODI against Australia at Mumbai, Rishabh Pant suffered a concussion as he attempted to play a pull shot off Pat Cummins. Subsequently, he was ruled out for the remainder of the encounter and KL Rahul was cast as the emergency wicket-keeper.

Since then though, the Karnataka batsman has excelled in that particular role, with Virat Kohli stating that he accords immense balance to the side, courtesy his ability to double up as a gloveman. Unsurprisingly, there has been intense debate around who India should opt for as their primary wicket-keeper, although Sourav Ganguly maintained that that decision remained solely with Kohli and coach, Ravi Shastri.

Virat Kohli takes that decision. The team management and captain decide the role of KL Rahul.

Furthermore, Ganguly said that the composition of the squad for the T20 World Cup was also at the captain and coach’s discretion, stating that whatever the pair wanted would happen.

Read the full article here: Virat and Ravi will decide: Sourav Ganguly's clear response to KL Rahul vs Rishabh Pant debate

#4 AB de Villiers dons keeping gloves

AB de Villiers

AB de Villiers hasn’t represented South Africa since 2018 and there remains speculation regarding his availability as the Proteas look to usher in a new era under Graeme Smith and Mark Boucher.

However, he has been plying his trade across various T20 leagues during that period, although he has largely refrained from donning the keeping gloves. But, before the Brisbane Heat’s encounter against the Melbourne Stars, the South African was spotted honing his keeping skills in a pre-match drill.

In fact, the sharpness he portrayed left several in awe, with legendary Australia, Adam Gilchrist also reacting on the same.

Read the full article here: WATCH: AB de Villiers keeps wickets in pre-match drill; Adam Gilchrist reacts

#5 England become first country to score 5,00,000 Test runs

Root scored England's 5,00,000th Test run

On Friday, England became the first cricketing nation to achieve the distinction of having scored 5,00,000 runs in Test cricket. The Three Lions did so when skipper, Joe Root pushed a ball into the cover region and scampered through for a run.

England accomplished the feat in their 1022nd Test match and at this juncture, they seem to be well ahead of their rivals. Australia are 2nd on the list, having scored 4,32,706 runs in 830 Tests while India occupy the 3rd spot, having scored 2,73,518 runs in 540 matches.

England are currently embroiled in a titanic Test tussle with South Africa in the rainbow nation, with the 4th Test of the 4-game series taking place at Johannesburg. The Three Lions currently hold a 2-1 advantage and would be hoping to finish the series on a high.

Read the full article here: England becomes the first nation to record 5,00,000 runs in Test cricket