Manchester | Jagran Sports Desk: Indian skipper Virat Kohli came in defence of youngster Rishabh Pant who is facing flak for throwing his wicket in the semi-final of the World Cup 2019 against New Zealand at Old Trafford in Manchester.

Kohli gave his own example and said that he too committed a lot of mistakes during his early days and Rishabh will learn with time.

India were three down for just five runs on board when Pant came into bat. He did all the hard work and but gave his wicket while attacking Kiwi spinner Mitchell Santner.    

"He's still young. I made many errors when I was young in my career and he will learn. He will look back and think yes, he could have chosen a different option in that situation and he realises that already," said Kohli.

In fact, the skipper wanted to look at the positive aspect that how he rebuilt the innings along with Hardik Pandya.

"He (Pant) is an instinctive player and did well to overcome that situation and stringing a partnership with Hardik (Pandya). I think the way they played after the loss of three wickets, four wickets rather, was quite commendable. I am sure he will reflect on it and he will come out stronger," he said.

The skipper was seen animatedly discussing a point with coach Ravi Shastri immediately after Pant holed out in the deep.

However, he said it's the player who suffers the most after committing an error.

"So all these guys have a lot of pride and passion to play for their country and they are the ones who feel the most disappointed when a mistake happens. From the outside, it looks like it was an error but the person who makes it trust me, they are the ones who suffer the most with it."

For the skipper, Pant is one for the future with the kind of talent he possesses.

"The talent is there for everyone to see and the character is there, but, as I said, yes, a few shots (refers to Hardik Pandya), not just Rishabh's. But what happens in sport. You make errors, you make decisions which are not right at that time and you have to accept it," he said.

Kohli was particularly happy for Ravindra Jadeja, who put up a lion-hearted show with the bat.

"I don't think we had to say anything to Jadeja after what happened over the last week. He was quite ready to just get on to the park, to be honest (smiles)," Kohli said with obvious reference to Sanjay Manjrejar's ‘bits and pieces' cricketer remark.

"I'm really happy for him because he's been a very understated but a top-quality cricketer for India on the field, with the ball, with the bat, priceless, so he's had a great game today," he said.

(with PTI inputs)

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma