As the Super Eights phase of the T20 World Cup is about to kick off on Wednesday, Indian fast bowler Ishant Sharma is confident that explosive batsman Rishabh Pant will be crucial for the Indian squad. Pant made a comeback to international cricket following a serious accident in December 2022. He regained his form while captaining the Delhi Capitals in the Indian Premier League, scoring 446 runs in 13 games at an average of 40.55. His form continued into the T20 World Cup, notably demonstrated in India's opening match against Ireland where he executed a reverse scoop for a boundary. In three challenging matches in New York, Pant has scored 96 runs at an average of 48.00 and a strike rate of 124.67. Ishant, who played under Pant's leadership in IPL 2024, believes the best is yet to come from Pant, describing him as a 'world-class' player.

Many former cricket stars predicted India's semifinal entry before the tournament began. With an unbeaten start, some fans are optimistic about India's chances of reaching the final. India has seen positive performances in the US, with skipper Rohit Sharma scoring a fifty, Suryakumar Yadav and Shivam Dube regaining form, and Arshdeep Singh excelling with the ball. Ishant notes that the current Indian team's strength lies in its versatile bench, allowing for diverse contributions in each game, setting it apart from previous editions.

In the first three games, India opted for a pace-heavy lineup, which sidelined the spin duo of Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal. However, in the upcoming matches in the West Indies, spinners could play a significant role. India will face Afghanistan in their first Super 8 game on Thursday at Kensington Oval Barbados.

Super Eights Groupings include Group A with Afghanistan, Australia, Bangladesh, and India, and Group B with England, South Africa, USA, and West Indies. The top two teams from each group will advance to the semifinals. The Super Eights schedule includes matches from June 19 to June 25, followed by the semifinals on June 27 and the final on June 29, all to be held in the West Indies.