Rishabh Pant, in first public comments since accident, thanks ‘heroes’

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Indian cricket team’s wicket-keeper and batter Rishabh Pant on Monday night made the first public comment since the fatal accident on the Delhi-Dehradun highway.

The ace cricketer thanked the “two heroes” who took him to the hospital after his car crashed into a road divider and caught fire on 30 December.

Pant said he would be “forever grateful and indebted” to Rajat Kumar and Nishu Kumar, posting a photo of the duo in his hospital bed.

On Twitter, the flamboyant cricketer wrote, “I may not have been able to thank everyone individually, but I must acknowledge these two heroes who helped me during my accident and ensured I got to the hospital safely. Rajat Kumar & Nishu Kumar, Thank you. I’ll be forever grateful and indebted”.

Pant crashed his Mercedes SUV north of New Delhi before dawn on 30 December. The 25-year-old cricketer suffered multiple injuries when the car rammed into a crash barrier, flipped over, and caught fire.

He was rushed to a local hospital in Dehradun before being airlifted to Mumbai for further treatment and surgery.

The Board of Cricket Control of India (BCCI) said that Pant suffered several injuries including a damaged ligament in his right knee, a hurt wrist and ankle, and abrasions on his back.

Sharing updates about his health Pant added on Twitter that his “road to recovery” had now begun and that an operation — reportedly on his knee — “was a success”.

“I am humbled and grateful for all the support and good wishes… The road to recovery has begun and I am ready for the challenges ahead,” he tweeted.

“From the bottom of my heart, I also would like to thank all my fans, teammates, doctors, and the physios for your kind words and encouragement. Looking forward to seeing you all on the field. #grateful #blessed.”

Pant, who is the captain of the Delhi Capitals side in the Indian Premier League, is set to miss the tournament due to start in late March or April.

Pant will also be absent for the first two Tests of Australia’s upcoming tour of India in February and March.

He is a mainstay of the Test squad and has played a key role in some of India’s most memorable wins in the last three years, including his brilliant 88 not out in the fourth and final Test in Australia in 2021 that helped India win the match and the series.

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