Against Zimbabwe on Sunday, Indian wicketkeeper-batter Rishabh Pant made a start after sitting on the bench for the first four games in the Super 12 round. In India’s last group game at the T20 World Cup 2022, Pant made his debut appearance for the Rohit Sharma-led team, taking the place of seasoned wicketkeeper-batter Dinesh Karthik.

The decision to replace Karthik with Pant in the Indian playing XI for their Super 12 match against Zimbabwe was previously justified by India’s all-format skipper Rohit. In advance of its last match in the T20 World Cup’s Super 12 round, India has already qualified for the semifinals. In response to a question on Pant’s inclusion back in the Indian playing XI before the World Cup semi-finals, Team India captain Rohit spoke during the customary pre-match news conference on Wednesday.

“Except for the two games we played in Perth, Rishabh was the only player who didn’t get to play at all on this trip between Pant and DK, as I also remarked before the last game. It was an unauthorized exhibition match. He was the only player who had been without a hit since then, so we wanted to give him some time and some alternatives so that we could decide whether to make adjustments in the semifinals or the championship game, Rohit told the press.

“The idea was that it would be unjust to simply drag the man out of thin air and force him to play the game. However, we have also made it clear to the lads from the start that everyone must be prepared for every game they will play, including the semifinal, championship, and lead games. They must be prepared for it, Rohit said.

Against Zimbabwe, Pant struggled with the willow and was removed for 3 runs off of 5 balls. India’s 71-run victory against Craig Ervine-led Zimbabwe gave them first place in Group 2 of the T20 World Cup. On Thursday, India will play Jos Buttler’s England in the second T20 World Cup semifinal. Indian captain Rohit said that both Pant and Karthik are competing to be India’s wicketkeeper at Adelaide Oval.

However, it was also somewhat tactical since, before the Zimbabwe game, we were unsure of the team we would face in the semifinals. As a result, we wanted to give a left-hander a chance to counter some of the middle-order spinners for New Zealand and England. That was the idea, and we believed Rishabh was the person we should go see and offer some time to. But once again, I doubt I’ll be able to predict what will happen tomorrow, but I can assure you that both goalkeepers will be in action,” the Indian captain said.