Rishabh Pant hogged all the limelight with his unbeaten 159-run knock in the second Test against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Friday. After Cheteshwar Pujara missed out on a double-hundred, Rishabh Pant took the charge of the team and established a 204-run stand for the seventh-wicket with Ravindra Jadeja (81) to power India to a mammoth total. Declaring on 622/7, India restricted Australia to 24 for no loss at stumps, 598 runs behind their first innings total.
Rishabh Pant was the first Indian wicketkeeper-batsman to score a century in Australia. It was his second after a 114-run knock against England at The Oval in September last year.
Following the impressive show in England, the 21-year-old southpaw was struggling to reach triple digits as he lost his wicket for identical scores of 92 in successive Test matches against the Windies at home.
In the post-day conference, Pant revealed that how he came out of the "nervous nineties" to score a hundred in Sydney.
"To be honest, I was a little nervous because in India when we were playing West Indies in the last two innings I got out on 92 and 92. So I was scared slightly but I got through that phase early, I guess," he said.
After reaching the triple-digit mark, Pant's celebration was no less heroic. He waved his bat in the air, dancing through the 22 yards. It looked quite similar to the sword celebration of Ravindra Jadeja, who was at the crease alongside.
"I love my celebration. I haven't thought I would do something like that but whatever the expression came out of me, that's it," Pant said.
Thanks to an unbeaten 189-ball 159, decorated by 15 boundaries and a six, Pant surpassed captain Virat Kohli to become second-highest run-scorer in the four-match Test series.
The wicketkeeper-batsman has scored 350 runs, while Kohli has made 282 runs in the 2018 Border-Gavaskar Trophy. Test specialist batsman Cheteshwar Pujara is on the top of the list with 521 runs.