During England’s tour of India earlier this year, Rishabh Pant showed his fearless approach with the bat. In the fourth Test in Ahmedabad, the southpaw went to the extent of playing a reverse-scoop off veteran speedster James Anderson. Then during the five-match T20I series, the left-hander meted out the same treatment to the Barbados-born Jofra Archer.
Dale Steyn, the legendary South Africa paceman, reckoned that it would have been embarrassing for him had Pant played those shots against him. The 37-year-old stated that he would have responded with a short-pitched delivery in such a scenario. Steyn was also of the opinion that Pant may not want to show the same audacity while playing outside India.
I doubt Rishabh Pant will do it anywhere else in the world: Steyn
“Is it still in the rulebook, can I roll the ball down the pitch because I would feel that embarrassed to run in and bowl another ball, but I can tell you that he would know where I am bowling the next ball, and that’s gonna be a short ball. That’s 100%,” Steyn was quoted as saying in a Q & A session with ESPNcricinfo.
“That’s disrespectful to do that kind of reverse scooping stuff. What he did to James Anderson to India, I doubt he will do it anywhere else in the world, but at that time, he looked red-hot and he was batting in such good form. I think he did it to Jofra Archer also. It’s arrogance at its best. It is amazing,” he stated.
Pant has grown leaps and bounds ever since the 2020-21 Border Gavaskar Trophy in Australia. In the fourth Test, his unbeaten knock made sure that Ajinkya Rahane and Co pulled off an improbable heist at The Gabba in Brisbane and managed to win the series 2-1. The knock garnered him praises from every nook and corner.
Not only has Pant performed at the highest level, but also in the 2021 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL). In the absence of Shreyas Iyer, who didn’t play the first leg, Pant led the Delhi Capitals (DC) with authority. He also showed decent touch with the willow.