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‘I’ve got huge raps on him, I think he’s a very, very good young player’ – Ricky Ponting on Abhishek Porel

'I've got huge raps on him, I think he's a very, very good young player' - Ricky Ponting on Abhishek Porel

Abhishek Porel. (Source -IPL/BCCI)

Delhi Capitals’ head coach Ricky Ponting has sung praises for Abishek Porel, the young left-hand batter who has been turning heads with his stellar performances in the ongoing IPL 2024. Ponting hinted at Porel donning the keeping gloves against Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) on Sunday, stepping in for the suspended Rishabh Pant.

Ponting expressed his admiration for Porel’s growth throughout the season, emphasizing his versatility and adaptability to different roles within the team. He highlighted Porel’s journey from batting at No. Nine to opening the innings, showcasing his evolving understanding of the game and his significant contributions to the team’s success.

“I’ve seen extreme growth in Abishek Porel in this IPL,” Ponting said in Bengaluru ahead of the match against RCB. “In fact, looking back to the start of last season, obviously [with] Rishabh’s accident, we needed to bring in some wicketkeepers into our squad after the auction. We tried a lot of guys, a lot of guys that played, more senior guys than Porel, but the moment that I laid eyes on him, I knew that he was a very special talent.

“I think, what we’ve seen in the last half a dozen games in particular, that talent’s really starting to shine through. He’s starting to work out what IPL cricket is all about. He’s had a couple of different roles as well. In the first game of the season for us, he came in as a No. 9 batsman, Impact Player, and made [32] off ten balls there, and now we see him opening the batting and he’s got better and better every game,” Ponting was quoted as saying by ESPN Cricinfo.

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Ponting continued his high regard for Porel, emphasizing his talent and potential, and hinted at his role as a wicketkeeper. He also suggested that Porel is likely to continue opening the batting due to his impressive performances and bright future prospects.

“I’ve got huge raps on him. I think he’s a very, very good young player, obviously we’ll probably get to see him with the keeping gloves on tomorrow as well, with Rishabh not being there. And then we’ll work out, when we finalise our team, with the batting order and stuff, but I’ll be surprised if he’s not at the top of the order again, because he has played really well, and he’s someone that I think has got a really bright future,” he added.

I think he would have been more surprised to be named than left out: Ponting

Additionally, Ricky Ponting took a moment to acknowledge the remarkable performances of Jake Fraser-McGurk, another standout player for Delhi Capitals this season. Despite not making it to the Australia squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup, Fraser-McGurk has left a lasting impression with his explosive batting in the powerplay overs.

Also Read: Ricky Ponting announces Axar Patel as stand in captain for Delhi Capitals against RCB

“I don’t think Jake expected to get picked in the first place,” Ponting said of his absence from the T20 World Cup squad. “It was only a few weeks ago that he turned up here as a replacement player, and probably the furthest thing from his mind was actually getting a chance to be in that World Cup squad. It’s just been how electrifying he’s been in this IPL. Some of the things he’s done – I think he’s made three 20-ball fifties in this tournament, so he along with Travis Head and Abhishek Sharma have been the stand-out powerplay batsmen in this entire tournament.

“I saw some quotes from him the day that the squad was announced or the day after – he wasn’t surprised that he wasn’t in the squad, he wasn’t disappointed at not being there. I’m sure he would have liked to have been in it, but I think he would have been more surprised to be named than left out. He’s focused now, like all of us, he’s making sure that we’re ready to go tomorrow. For us, it’s not about what happened yesterday, it’s about what we can do today to get better, and then make sure that we’re ready to play our best game of cricket tomorrow,” Ponting said.

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