What’s the story?
If reports are to believed, Indian cricketer Rishabh Pant suffered a personal tragedy on Wednesday night when his father Rajendra Pant passed away in his sleep. The 19-year-old, who is part of the Delhi Daredevils setup in the IPL, rushed to Roorkee on Thursday morning to be by the side of his mother and sister and also perform his father’s last rites at Haridwar.
“It’s a time that he needs to be with the family. He can take his time and join the team when he feels like,” A Daredevils official, on condition of anonymity, told the Times of India.
Pant, however, is expected to join the team on Friday night, ahead of the side’s first game against the Royal Challengers Bengaluru on Saturday.
In case you didn’t know...
Pant was to be seen playing for the Delhi Daredevils in the 2017 edition of the League and was expected to be one of the team’s key players after two of their overseas pros- JP Duminy and Quinton de Kock- were ruled out ahead of the start of the season.
In February, he became India’s youngest-ever T20I cricketer when he was picked to play for the nation against England in the deciding T20I of the series at Bengaluru.
The heart of the matter
The 2016-17 season proved to be a breakthrough one for the Delhi cricketer as he amassed 972 runs during the course of the season that included 4 centuries and 2 half-centuries with a best score of 308.
He also created history by smashing the fastest Ranji Trophy century reaching the three-figure mark off 48 balls against Jharkhand in Thumba in November last year.
Obviously, now that he is line to arrive in Bengaluru, he will look to try and get his focus back to the game. It sure won’t be easy, but with the likes of Rahul Dravid, Zaheer Khan and other experienced players around him, he will get all the guidance required and hope to get back to his groove soon and deliver on the field.
In the past, we have seen incidents such as these motivate cricketers to elevate their games. We saw it in Virat Kohli, who became a totally different player, when he lost his father in 2006, at the age of 18.
Perhaps, this tragedy will have a similar impact on Pant as well and one could see him outdo his performance from the 2016-17 season and do even better next year.