New Delhi | Jagran Sports Desk: Amid coronavirus lockdown, Ashish Nehra is interacting a lot with media persons. In a recent interview, he spoke about a lot of topics, including the Indian Premier League. He also revealed that there is only one player currently in the India squad who achieve success like MS Dhoni and leave his impact in the Indian cricket team.

Nehra said that Rishabh Pant is the only player who he sees as capable of coming close to Dhoni, whose current troubles with form reminds the 40-year-old of the former Indian skipper in his early days.

"I don't see anyone coming close to the impact he has had as a wicketkeeper-batsman except for Rishabh Pant," he told The Times of India.

“Pant’s journey – though it is still early days – reminds me a lot of Dhoni,” Nehra added.

He said that when MS Dhoni had entered the team, Rahul Dravid was a makeshift Wwicketkeeper. What helped that 38-year-old succeed was the ability to stand out as a contemporary wicketkeeper in the early part of his career. 

Nehra said that though Dhoni was behind contemporaries Parthiv Patel and Dinesh Karthik in wicketkeeping skills at the time, but he was the best wicketkeeper-batsman among them. Dhoni worked hard on his game, knew what worked for him and grew as an impeccable wicketkeeper, he added.

In his flashback of memories, Nehra said that the wicket-keeper batsman had scored his first maiden hundred exactly 15 years ago in an ODI against Pakistan. He slammed 148 runs off just 123 deliveries and Nehra's four-wicket haul later in the match helped India win.

Nehra said that knock by MS Dhoni helped India gain the confidence that they too could have a good wicketkeeper-batsman.

"That innings got the team to believe that we too could have a prolific wicketkeeper-batsman," Nehra told the Times of India.

"He hardly ever batted at No. 3 after that innings but he had made a statement that day. We lost all the remaining four matches in that series but we discovered Dhoni," he added.


(with IANS inputs)

Posted By: James Kuanal