Terming Rishabh Pant as a 'match winner', Delhi Capitals advisor Sourav Ganguly believes that the southpaw has the qualities which will take him a long, long way ahead. Despite Pant's inconsistent performances in the 12th edition of the Indian Premier League so far, Ganguly believes in Pant to deliver when the opportune moment arises.
In an exclusive interview with IndiaTV, Ganguly opens up on Pant as a match winner, MS Dhoni's presence in CSK, Mumbai's Yuvraj Singh stilling hammering sixes and Royal Challengers Bangalore's current form in the IPL.
Coming to Delhi's 'match winner' Pant, Ganguly is all praise for the southpaw and reckons that he has a bright future ahead.
"He's (Rishabh) highly gifted and talented. His knock in Mumbai was incredible and I've seen very few players put on a performance like that. It's a format where you have to score runs. He has the match-winning ability. In my career, I've never stopped a match winner from doing what he does best. I believe in him. Be it Delhi or India, he will go a long way as his future is very bright." Ganguly told IndiaTV.
Sharing the praise as well is Pant's mentor, MS Dhoni. Leading CSK to win their third title last season and currently being unbeaten in the T20 tournament, Ganguly believes that Dhoni's presence alone, makes a tremendous difference and that the side have a different confidence this season.
On being asked about CSK's form in the season so far, Ganguly feels that it is because of their core players sticking together, that CSK have excelled.
"They (CSK) have an experienced team and many players have been playing together for a long time. Bravo, MS, Raina, Jadeja, Watson, they've been together for a while, making them the core of the team. Dhoni's presence makes a huge difference simply because of his experience as captain, he knows the angles, which bowler to bowl when. There's a different confidence to their side," said the former India captain.
Coming to the rut that Royal Challengers Bangalore are currently stuck in and the subpar performances by skipper Virat Kohli, Ganguly feels that it's a 'passing phase' for the RCB captain and doesn't rule out the Bangalore franchise from the tournament just yet.
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"He played well last season, I think it's a passing phase for him this season. The amount of runs he's (Virat) scored for India, I guess no player is close to that. He needs to take the backseat and think with a calm and composed mind with the team. There are still matches ahead. I won't rule out RCB as there is still time and I hope to see him take the team forward," said Ganguly.
Speaking about playing good cricket, Ganguly was happy to see his old teammate Yuvraj Singh playing for Mumbai Indians and scoring runs. Here's what 'Dada' had to say on Yuvi.
"Yuvraj is in good form. I'm happy to see him play like this. Every player can't be the same as he was earlier. His game has changed and I hope his season goes well as he's nearing his career's end. I want him to play some good cricket," concluded Ganguly.
(Interviewd by IndiaTV's Sports Executive Editor Samip Rajguru)