Rishabh Pant, who was involved in a car accident in December of last year, is currently recovering but will not be able to participate in the 15th season of the Indian Premier League (IPL). David Warner has been named the new captain of the team in Pant’s absence. However, on Friday, DC head coach Ricky Ponting stated that Pant was the team’s “heart and soul.”
During an event in Delhi on March 24, Ponting expressed that Pant was a crucial and valued member of the team, and in honor of him, the team management is considering wearing his jersey number on their shirts or caps as a tribute.
Ricky Ponting on paying tribute to Rishabh Pant
“In an ideal world for me, he’d be sitting next to me in the dugout every match. But if that’s not possible, we’d like to make him part of the team in ways possible. We can have his number on our shirts or on caps. Just to make it clear that he’s our leader, even if he’s not with us,” Ponting said.
Although Warner has been selected as the new captain of DC, the team has yet to determine their preferred wicketkeeper to replace Pant.
“We haven’t decided that yet. Sarfaraz (Khan) has joined us and we’ll look at the practice games ahead to decide that. That’s one big hole Rishabh leaves behind. With the impact player rule coming in, we can use a number of ways,” he added.
Warner, who was acquired for Rs 6.25 crore after being released by Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH), will serve as the captain of DC during the IPL 2023 season. Meanwhile, all-rounder Axar Patel has been designated as the team’s vice-captain. During his inaugural season with DC, Warner was their top scorer, having scored 432 runs with a batting average of 48 and a strike rate of 150.52, which included five half-centuries.