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India vs England: ‘Rishabh Pant has guts but needs some improvements’

Rishabh Pant reminded former cricketer Farokh Engineer of his own Test debut in England after the youngster opened his account with a massive six off Adil Rashid at Trent Bridge.

cricket Updated: Aug 27, 2018 08:53 IST
N Ananthanarayanan
N Ananthanarayanan
Hindustan Times, Nottingham
India vs England,Rishabh Pant,Farokh Engineer
India's Rishabh Pant gestures to teammates during the third Test match against England at Trent Bridge.(AP)

Rishabh Pant passed his Test debut against England at Trent Bridge with flying colours, and delighted former India stumper Farokh Engineer sees a bit of himself in the 20-year-old.

Pant took seven catches in a composed showing but his fearlessness was hailed after becoming the first Indian to get off the mark in Test cricket with a six, hoicking England leg-spinner Adil Rashid over long on off the second ball he faced.

“I’m very impressed, he has tremendous reflexes,” he said on Sunday. “I love to see youngsters make a mark. He didn’t show any nerves and hit the second ball for a six. My first three balls I faced in Test cricket, I hit them for fours, but that was out of sheer nervousness.”

Engineer made his Test debut against England at Kanpur in 1961, becoming popular for his sharp keeping to the famed spin quartet, and aggressive batting in an era when playing in the air was a strict no.

READ: India vs England: India banish catching blues in style

“Rishabh has guts and confidence. Some nerves are bound to happen being his debut. He wanted to get off the mark quickly and that is the shot he plays. But he was bubbling,” Engineer added.

However, Engineer, who played for Lancashire in the English County and lives in Manchester, felt Pant can improve his keeping with minor adjustments. The Delhi Ranji skipper replaced Dinesh Karthik in the eleven for the game.

Pant’s one blemish during India’s 203-run win in Trent Bridge was dropping Jos Buttler on one run. He went on to make 106, but it didn’t hurt India as they were already in control of the match.

“He gets up too soon. One must rise with the ball. He also positioned himself a bit too back, the slip cordon also. Jasprit Bumrah once called him forward. If I meet him, I will tell him. A wicket-keeper should stay as low as possible to move quickly and even turn half-chances into catches.

“But he will learn. Overall, his performance was brilliant.”

First Published: Aug 27, 2018 08:53 IST

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