Rahul Dravid clarifies confusion around Ishan Kishan’s break

After India’s brilliant win in Vizag in the second Test against England, head coach Rahul Dravid addressed the situation surrounding Ishan Kishan, who had recently taken a break from cricket.

Ishan Kishan, a talented young cricketer, had been part of India's T20I squad in South Africa in December 2023 but did not feature in any of the three matches. Despite being India's Test wicketkeeper during their tour of the Caribbean in July, he was not considered for the series against England or the preceding one in South Africa. 

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Kishan had requested a break from cricket, and his last competitive appearance was in the T20I series against Australia at home in November the previous year. Notably, he had not participated in the ongoing Ranji Trophy as well.

Rahul Dravid on Ishan Kishan
Photo by Icon Sport

Rahul Dravid clears the air on Ishan Kishan

Dravid, after India's series-levelling victory against England in Visakhapatnam, addressed the issue of Kishan's absence from the team. 

He stated, “There's a way back for anyone and everyone. It's not that we rule out anybody from anything. I just don't want to go on laboring about the Ishan Kishan point. I've tried to explain it as best as I can.”

Dravid clarified that Kishan had requested a break, and the management respected that decision. He added that Kishan was not being forced to play domestic cricket, and the choice of when to return to the game was entirely his.

Dravid also highlighted that the management remained in touch with Kishan and acknowledged that he had not resumed playing yet. 

Consequently, Kishan's return to the team was not being considered at the moment, as it appeared he may not be ready to make a comeback. Dravid underlined that the selectors would assess all available options, especially considering Rishabh Pant's injury.

In the absence of Ishan Kishan, India had chosen KS Bharat, KL Rahul, and Dhruv Jurel as wicketkeepers for the first two Tests against England. Bharat had been the preferred choice behind the stumps, playing both Tests. He showcased commendable wicketkeeping skills, taking six catches and contributing with scores of 41, 28, 17, and 6 in the series.

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Dravid acknowledged that Bharat's batting needed refinement but praised his wicketkeeping abilities. He said, “Young players need time to develop and they're growing at their own pace. Of course, as a coach, you really want players who come in to be able to grab the opportunities they get and be able to perform.” 

The head coach appreciated Bharat's performance with the gloves, emphasizing that his keeping had been excellent during the Test matches. However, he also noted that Bharat himself might agree that there were opportunities for him to make more significant contributions with the bat.

Dravid was supportive and patient about Kishan’s situation, appreciating his need to be away from the game, while also clarifying that his way back would involve playing competitive cricket.


Rohit is an experienced cricket writer based in India