New Delhi: India wicketkeeper-batter Rishabh Pant will be coming to the Arun Jaitley Stadium here to watch his team Delhi Capitals’ first home match of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 against the Gujarat Titans on Tuesday, confirmed Shyam Sharma, Director of the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA).
“Yes, Rishabh will come (to the stadium). He will be at the stadium today,” Sharma told IANS on Tuesday.
He also explained the special arrangements made by the DDCA to ensure Pant smoothly watches the game at the stadium.
“If a golf cart is needed, we have that. Wherever he wants to go, we will make the path smooth so that he can reach without any difficulty, because Mr (Rohan) Jaitley (DDCA President) is monitoring it himself. He said, ‘I want the best facilities for him. People should not trouble him’,” the DDCA director said.
“The security will also be doubled so that he is not needlessly disturbed by anyone. We will be ensuring that he is reaching the point where he would like to sit and watch the match, whether it’s in the dugout or some other area, but we will make it smooth,” he added.
It will be Pant’s first appearance at a cricket stadium after miraculously surviving a horrific car accident while on his way to his hometown Roorkee in Uttarakhand from New Delhi on December 30 last year.
As of now, Pant is on the path to recovery from injuries which have kept him out of cricketing action since the start of this year, including missing Border-Gavaskar Trophy and IPL 2023.
Sharma also explained how Pant coming to the stadium to watch Delhi’s match will aid in his quicker recovery from injuries, especially from a mental aspect.
“He will also get the motivation (to recover faster). Instead of being alone at home all the time, being involved for today’s match with his team will help him recover faster mentally, which will be very good for him,” he said.
“We were also wishing that he comes to watch today’s game and that is confirmed too. I had spoken to him and he said that yes, he will be coming,” he added.
In Pant’s absence, left-handed opener David Warner has been named as the skipper of Delhi Capitals in IPL 2023, with left-arm spin all-rounder Axar Patel being the vice-captain. The franchise also drafted left-handed wicketkeeper-batter Abhishek Porel as Pant’s replacement for IPL 2023.
During their IPL 2023 opening game against Lucknow Super Giants, Delhi had kept Pant’s jersey on top of their dugout as a tribute to their injured regular captain.
The 25-year old Pant was last seen in action during India’s second Test against Bangladesh at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium which ended on December 25. He hit a match-winning 93 in the first innings of that game.