Rishabh Pant raced to a scintillating century in the last over of play on day two of the second practice match at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Saturday.
Pant, who blasted 22 from Jack Wildermuth’s final over, reached the three-figure mark in just 73 deliveries, a throwback strikingly dissimilar to Steve Waugh’s memorable Ashes ton at the same ground.
I am so happy for you ,reply to all haters from @RishabhPant17 bat Brilliant 💯 by you and you are best WK batsman in India right now. You will play all 4 tests vs Aus. #RishabhPant #AUSvIND pic.twitter.com/6v9i8Yl4cC
— Cricket.Addictor_18 (@cricaddict_18) December 12, 2020
— Pachipulusu Prudhvi (@PachipulusuP) December 12, 2020
Needing 19 runs to reach his century when Wildermuth commenced the second evening’s final over, Pant clobbered him for 4, 4, 6, 4, 4, to remain unbeaten on a blistering 103 off only 73 balls.
Overall, he hit nine fours and six sixes.
Rishabh Pant puts claims on wicketkeeper-batsman spot for Adelaide Test. Hammers 103 off 73 👏 pic.twitter.com/5ivqhliBPN
— Parveen Kumar Dogra (@kparveen) December 12, 2020
In the final session of play, Pant’s aggressive approach paid dividends as he smashed the Australia A bowlers to all corners of the Sydney Cricket Ground, the southpaw making a strong case for himself for the wicketkeeper’s job in Adelaide ahead of Test specialist Wriddhiman Saha.
To cite an example of his power-hitting, Pant swept one over the cow corner for a six, leaving Nic Maddinson to search for the ball among the rows of chairs at the SCG.
At the close of play, India were strongly placed at 386/4 with an overall lead by 472 runs, having bundled out the home team out for a paltry 108 in their first innings on Friday.
Rishabh Pant did not play the first three-day warm-up match and according to former India opener Aakash Chopra, the southpaw was also last in the queue on the list of Indian wicket-keepers at the moment. However, with this knock, the debate surrounding his selection will surely spark up.
(With PTI inputs)