Wriddhiman Saha entered a special club of Indian wicket-keepers during the third day of the fourth and final Test against Australia in Dharamsala as he went past 1000 runs. However, he just missed the mark of reaching 1000 runs as a specialist keeper as he was dismissed on 31. (LIVE BLOG)
Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Syed Kirmani, Farokh Engineer, Nayan Mongia and Kiran More are the Indian wicket-keepers who have gone past 1000 runs in Tests. Dhoni is the leading run-scorer with 4876 runs at an average of 38 with 33 fifties and six centuries. (LIVE SCORECARD)
The wicket-keeper inched towards the landmark but on 31, he fended off a pacy bouncer from Pat Cummins to be caught by Steven Smith at first slip. He shared a 96-run stand with Ravindra Jadeja, who smashed 63 as India took a vital 32-run lead.
At the start of Day 3, Saha went past 1000 runs as a batsman by gliding Pat Cummins to third man for a couple. The Bengal wicket-keeper made his debut in 2010 against South Africa in Nagpur but in that Test, he played as a specialist batsman. With Dhoni dominating the scene, Saha got chances only when Dhoni was suspended or injured. However, following the retirement of the former India skipper from Tests in December 2014 against Australia in Melbourne, Saha became a regular.
Saha has enjoyed a marvellous 2016/17. He smashed his first Test century during the third Test against the West Indies in St.Lucia. In the second Test against New Zealand in Eden Gardens, his home ground, Saha won the Man of the Match for his unbeaten 54 and 58 to help India to a 178-run win. In the one-off Test against Bangladesh in Hyderabad, he blasted an unbeaten 106 and shared a 118-run stand with Ravindra Jadeja to help India beat Bangladesh by 208 runs.
However, his crowning moment was his third Test ton of 117 in the Ranchi Test against Australia. He shared a 199-run stand with Cheteshwar Pujara, who notched up his third double ton as India came close to securing the title. The 199-run stand for the seventh wicket remains the best in the series and is the best seventh-wicket stand for India against Australia.
Saha’s knock and his 96-run partnership with Jadeja has gone a long way in India taking one step closer to winning the series.