You don’t want to be in both dressing rooms when Rishabh Pant bats: Ravi Ashwin
Rishabh Pant's valiant knock of 97 runs became the backbone of India's batting set up at SCG.
Updated - Jan 12, 2021 12:06 pm
Rishabh Pant was the hero for visitors on the Day 5 of the Sydney Test as India and Australia produced an enthralling show to say the least. Wicketkeeping-batsman was under major scrutiny for his poor performance behind the gloves in the third Test as he dropped a couple of catches in the first innings along with an ordinary knock of 36 off 67 with the willow in the second innings.
Many cricket analysts and pundits were of the view that Pant doesn’t deserve a place in the Playing XI as he still needs grooming and veteran Wriddhiman Saha should be picked ahead of him as the first-choice wicketkeeper. However, the youngster shut down the mouth of the critics with a scintillating knock on the last day of the Test at SCG.
India were reeling at a score of 102 for 3 having lost their stand-in skipper Ajinkya Rahane in the first hour of the fifth day. This is when Pant walked in the middle and played a memorable knock of 97 runs off 118 deliveries. He fell short of just 3 runs to reach the remarkable feat of scoring another hundred as Nathan Lyon picked his wicket.
The wicketkeeper-batsman had also stitched a crucial partnership of 148 runs with Cheteshwar Pujara to bring India back in the game. However, after both the batsmen lost their wickets back-to-back, India had lost all the hopes of saving the match. At the end, India managed to bounce back and end the match in a historic draw as Ravichandran Ashwin and Hanuma Vihari together defended 259 balls despite suffering physical injuries and not being in the best of their health.
Rishabh Pant puts you on the tenterhooks: Ravi Ashwin
Speaking about the marquee game, Ashwin reckoned that chasing 400 was never going to be easy but the team is happy that they could keep the series alive. The spinner also lauded Rishabh Pant for his heroics with the willow and added that the presence of Pant in the middle gave jitters to both the dressing rooms as his wicket could have changed the things in any direction in a game.
“Look I mean, chasing 400 in the final innings in Sydney with the wicket going a bit up and down from Day 3 was never going to be easy. But that knock from Rishabh set us up. That’s the sort of player he is, he is quite electrical. You don’t want to be in both dressing rooms when he bat.
“The opposition dressing room would be hoping for a wicket when watching him bat and we are sitting here, thinking he shouldn’t play a rash shot. So, he puts you on the tenterhooks. But his knock set us up. But we lost Rishabh and Pujara back-to-back which sort of put things back a bit,” Ashwin said as quoted by India Today.