Rishabh Pant got on top of Craig Overton’s ball, pulled it through square leg to bring up his maiden ODI ton. The Indian wicketkeeper-batter, 26 ODIs old, finished the game with an unbeaten 125 off 113 balls to help his side beat England by five wickets.
India won the three-match ODI series 2-1.
Pant came on to bat when India were reduced to 21/2 inside five overs. He absorbed the pressure as the visitors lost Virat Kohli (17) and Suryakumar Yadav (16) for cheap. The 24-year-old then joined hands with Hardik Pandya to stitch a century stand and rescue the Men in Blue. The all-rounder, who had taken a four-wicket haul in the first innings, made 71.
India won the match with eight overs to spare.
With the 125-run knock, Pant became the third desiganted Indian wicketkeeper to score a hundred outside Asia. Only Rahul Dravid and KL Rahul have done it in the past.
STAT: ODI 100s by desiganted Indian wicketkeepers outside Asia
Rahul Dravid 145 v SL Taunton 1999
KL Rahul 112 v NZ Mount Maunganui 2020
Rishabh Pant 100* v Eng Manchester 2022
Several former cricketers, experts and fans praised Pant for his brilliant show.
“This is one of the best ODI? under pressure on the English soil from an Indian batter, Considering series was on the line @RishabhPant17,” former India all-rounder Irfan Pathan tweeted.
“Last match of a series and @RishabhPant17 playing brilliantly – this is a better love story than twilight. Incredible innings from an incredible player – with great support from Hardik and Jadeja,” legendary India opener Virender Sehwag said on Twitter.
After the win, skipper Rohit Sharma gestured a thumbs up at Pant. England’s Jonny Bairstow hugged him.
“Heartiest congratulations @RishabhPant17 bro on your ODI century. You were fantastic throughout, what a player ??? #INDvENG,” Suresh Raina tweeted.
Here are some other social media reactions:
Sent into bat, skipper Jos Buttler top-scored with 60 while opener Jason Roy made 41, as England were bowled out for 259.
For India, Hardik Pandya was the pick of the bowlers with figures of 4/24, while Yuzvendra Chahal took three wickets for 60.