Sunil Gavaskar Slams Rishabh Pant: 'Has To Be Some Sense Of Responsibility'
India vs South Africa: Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar criticised Rishabh Pant over his shot selection, after the wicket-keeper-batter was dismissed for a duck in India's second innings.
- Rishabh Pant was dismissed for a duck by Kagiso Rabada
- Cheteshwar Pujara (53) and Ajinkya Rahane (58) scored half-centuries
- Kagiso Rabada has picked up important wickets on the third morning
Team India were off to a great start on day 3 of the 2nd Test against South Africa in Johannesburg as the experienced duo of Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane batted fluently to put together a century partnership to increase the tourists' lead. Both Pujara and Rahane batted under extreme pressure, but showed their class against a strong South African pace attack to slam respective half-centuries. But their good work was undone as Kagiso Rabada sent the duo back into the pavillion in quick succession.
Rahane contributed 58 before getting caught behind while Pujara was trapped LBW for 53 by a Rabada in-cutter. India were suddenly under pressure at 163/4 and all eyes were on the pair of Hanuma Vihari and Rishabh Pant to take the lead beyond 200 runs.
But the Indian wicket-keeper batter decided to go after Rabada without spending any time on the wicket and ended up losing his wicket in the process. Pant gave Rabada the charge but the paceman bowled a short delivery and Pant's attempt to get bat on ball led him to get a faint edge, which was pouched behind the wicket, as the southpaw departed for a duck.
Pant has often scored important runs for the team with his slam bang style of batting but he has also lost out on several occasions. Former India captain and batting legend Sunil Gavaskar came down heavily on Pant for playing such an irresponsible shot.
"You have got two new batsmen at the crease and then you saw that shot from Rishabh Pant. Forgettable, no excuses for that shot, no excuses. None of that nonsense about that being his natural game. There has to be some sense of responsibility shown. Because there are others taking the blows. There is guys like Rahane and Pujara who have taken it on their body. So you also fight it out," a miffed Gavaskar said on commentary.
He went on to add that there won't be "any kind words" for Pant in the dressing room too. India were down to 167/5 at the time of Pant's dismissal, with an overall lead of just 140 runs.
There was further damage done by the South African bowlers as Lungi Ngidi sent back Ashwin, who was looking good with the bat again.
India went into lunch at 188/6, leading by 161 runs.