ANI Photo | Rishabh Pant goes through match-simulation exercises ahead of IPL 2024

India wicketkeeper batter Rishabh Pant has begun going through a series of match-simulation exercises in Bengaluru as he looks to regain fitness ahead of the upcoming edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), according to ESPNcricinfo.
Pant is yet to make an appearance after he sustained injuries during a near-fatal car accident in December 2022.
On Tuesday, Pant and Mumbai Indians skipper Hardik Pandya, who, too, is recovering from an ankle injury, played a 20-over practice game at the KSCA facility in Alur, Karnataka. Both players were under the supervision of National Cricket Academy physios and trainers.
Pandya and Pant are expected to go through another round of match simulation and conditioning drills on Thursday. According to ESPNcricinfo, Pant didn’t experience any discomfort throughout the 20-over game and the team that monitored him is believed to be satisfied with the left-handed batter’s endurance level. However, Pandt didn’t take the gloves during the practice match.
He also posted a video on Instagram, in which he was taking part in wicketkeeping and mobility drills. This has become a part of Pant’s lower-body conditioning for the past six weeks.
Earlier this month, Delhi Capitals head coach Ricky Ponting stated that their star performer Pant was optimistic about his return but the former Australia skipper feels that anything that they get from the 26-year-old will be a bonus for the team.
“Rishabh is very confident that he’s going to be right to play. In what capacity we’re not quite sure yet. You would have seen all the social-media stuff, he’s up and about and running well. But in saying that we’re only six weeks away from the first game as well. So we’re not sure if we’ll get wicketkeeping out of him this year,” Ponting said as quoted from ESPNcricinfo.
“But I’ll guarantee if I asked him now he’ll say, ‘I’m playing every game, I’m keeping every game and I’m batting at No.4.’ That’s just what he’s like, but we’ll keep our fingers crossed. He’s such a dynamic player. He’s obviously our captain. We missed him incredibly last year. If you understand the journey he’s been on the last 12-13 months, it was a horrific incident. One that I know he feels very lucky to have even survived, let alone have the chance to play cricket again,” Ponting added.
“We’ll just keep our fingers crossed and hope that he can be out there and play. Even if it’s not all the games, if we can manage him through 10 of the 14 games or whatever that might be then whatever games you can get out of him will be a bonus,” Ponting stated. (ANI)

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