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India vs England: Hardik Pandya sees ‘fearless’ Rishabh Pant go a long, long way

Hardik Pandya was in the batting crease when Pant came in to bat on Saturday, and announced his arrival by smashing the second ball he faced, from leg-spinner Adil Rashid, over long-on for six, eventually scoring 24.

cricket Updated: Aug 20, 2018 16:53 IST
N Ananthanarayanan
N Ananthanarayanan
Hindustan Times, Nottingham
India vs England,Hardik Pandya,Rishabh Pant
India's Rishabh Pant bats during the second day of the third cricket test match between England and India at Trent Bridge in Nottingham, England, Sunday, Aug. 19, 2018. (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)(AP)

Hardik Pandya was standing at point making gestures and having a laugh with debutant stumper Rishabh Pant, who was flapping his hands like wings and sharing a joke on Sunday in the Trent Bridge Test.

Barely two hours later, both had their ‘high fives’, the young players laying a marker for their career and leaving India primed for victory in the third match of the five-game series against England which they bid to comeback from 0-2 down.

Pandya, 24, claimed his maiden five-wicket haul with his 5/28 in six overs also helping establish his credentials as an all-rounder. Pant, 20, took five catches on debut, two of them off Pandya’s bowling, as Indian seamers ran riot in seaming conditions before a packed Sunday crowd.

Pandya was in the batting crease when Pant came in to bat on Saturday, and announced his arrival by smashing the second ball he faced, from leg-spinner Adil Rashid, over long-on for six, eventually scoring 24.

It left the all-rounder gushing in praise after the second day’s play.

ALSO READ : India vs England: Never wanted to be Kapil Dev, says Hardik Pandya after Trent Bridge heroics

“Rishabh is amazing, to be honest. Yesterday the way he came and batted was amazing. He was saying ‘I am nervous’ and I looked at the scoreboard and I’m like ‘I have played 55 balls and scored 18 and you are already 18 in some 23 balls’! We were joking as well. He was amazing behind the stumps. When someone is catching so well, you know as a bowler, if you create a chance, they will grab it.

“The confidence… when I was new in the team, I was like that; I get that feeling when I see him, and it hasn’t been too many years for me either. But the confidence in him, he will play for long.

“He is a horse for the long race. He will do well and he is not afraid of anything. If in this field, someone plays as freely, success will come.”

First Published: Aug 20, 2018 11:44 IST