‘I Missed a Stumping, Crowd Started to Chant Dhoni, Dhoni’: Rishabh Pant Cried After ‘Unfair Comparisons’

Last Updated: February 03, 2024, 09:25 IST

Rishabh Pant (left) with MS Dhoni (Pic Credit: BCCI)

Rishabh Pant (left) with MS Dhoni (Pic Credit: BCCI)

Wicketkeeper-batter Rishabh Pant drew comparisons with the legendary MS Dhoni and admits he felt under pressure because of that.

India wicketkeeper-batter Rishabh Pant has revealed that comparisons with the legendary MS Dhoni during the early years of his international career impacted him so much so that he used to cry in his room.

Pant recalled how the crowd once taunted him with chants of Dhoni after he missed a stumping chance.

“I used to really feel very bad. I used to go back to my room and cry at 20-21 years of age. Under stress, I couldn’t breathe. So much pressure, and I didn’t know what to do. I missed a stumping in Mohali, and the crowd started to chant ‘Dhoni Dhoni’,” Pant said in an interview to Star Sports.

Pant though has a close relationship with Dhoni, using the former India captain as his sounding board.

“I always find it difficult to explain my relationship with MS. Dhoni. There are some with whom you can talk freely. I discuss everything with MSD. I have learned so much from him,” Pant said.

“I discuss things with him that I wouldn’t discuss with anybody else. That’s the kind of relationship (I have) with him,” he added.

Pant, a wicketkeeper-batter, came into the side with Dhoni entering the final couple of years of his India career and naturally, he was seen as his successor.

The 26-year-old never understood the comparisons though considering he was still in his early 20s.

“First of all, I didn’t understand why questions were raised. I had just made it to the team, and people were talking about being a replacement,” Pant said.

“Why were people raising such questions at a youngster? Why are you comparing? There shouldn’t be any comparison at all. Some have played five matches and the others have played 500. It’s been such a long journey, so many ups and downs, so the comparison is not fair,” he added.

Pant also credited legendary allrounder Yuvraj Singh for making him comfortable after he broke into the national side.

“At the start, I was very young, and there were a lot of senior players, a lot of them actually. Yuvraj Singh, MS were there, all seniors. It does take some time, but I didn’t get the feeling of them being super seniors. They were very welcoming and made me very comfortable. They make every new player very comfortable. This is the culture of the Indian team,” he said.

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