The Battle of the Young Guns: Rishabh Pant vs. Shubman Gill

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With rumours of current India Cricket Team skipper Rohit Sharma retiring from T20Is, people have also started to speculate whether the upcoming IND vs SA Test series will be his last. 36-year-old Rohit suffered from injuries in Tests, playing just 9 matches in the last two years. With increasing age and fitness in question, former opener Aakash Chopra has given his next pick for the Test team. The cricketer turned Youtuber picked Rishabh Pant or Shubman Gill as Rohit’s successor for Team India’s captaincy.

Talking about cricket in a video on his YouTube channel, Chopra was asked, “Who do you think will be India’s next Test captain after R Sharma”?

“I’m talking about long-term, Shubman Gill. I’m not talking about now, but down the line”, the former opener made it certain that he would pick Gill as skipper if and when Rohit Sharma decided to step down.

“It could be Shubman as the Test skipper, or it could be Rishabh Pant,” Chopra added.

While talking about Pant, the Test batter, he said, “As a Test cricketer, he is 24-carat gold. He’s a wicketkeeper and a game changer.”

“I would look at either of these two once Rohit decided to call it quits in Test cricket,” Aakash Chopra concluded.

Rishabh Pant or Shubman Gill, who deserves the leadership in Tests?

If we were to pick one from Pant or Gill now, the only option would be the opener. Gill currently holds the spot in three formats of the game while Pant recovers from his accident last year.

However, as Chopra mentioned in his video, if we were to look at the leadership after the T20 World Cup 2024 is over, things might be different.

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In their short careers, Pant is way ahead of Gill in Test cricket. While their batting positions are different, Pant has four overseas tons and was India’s best player from 2019 to 2022. Compare that to Gill, who has just two tons (both in Asian conditions).

Pant has won two series in Australia and was the man who took a depleted India cricket team across the finish line at Gabba two years ago. If the wicketkeeper returns to full fitness, he will be the outright favourite for the Test leadership.

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