Rishabh Pant is a lot of fun, isn’t he? Following in the footsteps of a figure so revered as MS Dhoni would have been a tall order for most players, however, Pant has swaggered into the India set-up with some of the most aggressive and colourful cricket across all three formats. Still only 24 years old, Pant is the captain of an IPL franchise, the starting wicket-keeper for his country’s Test team and with a skill ceiling that looks incredibly high. Check out SinkorSwimSports as we review the best Rishabh Pant stats, records, best figures and India career so far.
At A Glance: Rishabh Pant Stats
Full Name: Rishabh Rajendra Pant
D.O.B.: 4 October 1997 (age 24), Roorkee, Uttarakhand, India
Domestic Team: Delhi
Top Score: 159* (vs Australia, 2019)
India’s Next Big Hope
Rishabh Pant was born and raised in Roorkee in the Uttarakhand region of India, where he and his mother would travel to the Sonnet Cricket Academy in Delhi on the weekends from the age of 12. The logistical headache of such a commute led to his coach Tarak Sinha suggesting the young batter might be better off plying his trade in Rajasthan.
Pant stayed in the capital, however, and his career-making break would come at U-19. After dramatically reinventing his batting style, he made 150 in a second innings match against Assam, a knock he still regards as his most important.
After smashing the fastest fifty at the U-19 Cricket World Cup, Pant would make his First-Class and List A debut with Delhi in the 2015–16 Ranji Trophy and 2015–16 Vijay Hazare Trophy respectively.
He was given the Delhi captaincy in 2017 following the retirement of Gautham Gambhir ahead of the 2016–17 Vijay Hazare Trophy. That season, he also became the third-youngest Indian batter to hit a triple century with a stunning 308 against Maharashtra.
Rishabh Pant IPL Career
On the back of his stellar form with the U-19 India team, Pant was picked up by the Delhi Daredevils for the first time ahead of the 2016 IPL season. In one of the first examples of how even the biggest of stages wasn’t going to prevent the young Indian from playing his way, Pant hit 69 off just 40 deliveries in just his third match of the series.
On 11 May 2018 Pant smashed his first IPL century with 128 off just 63 against the Sunrisers Hyderabad. It was the highest individual IPL score by an Indian in the IPL and made Pant the second-youngest player to hit a century in the tournament.
For the 2021 and 2022 seasons of the IPL, Pant would be named as the Delhi Capitals’ captain.
Rishabh Pant was called up for the first time for the India national side ahead of the T20I series against England. He would make his debut in the 3rd T20 at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore on 1 February 2017, becoming the youngest T20I debutant for India at 19 years and 120 days.
Pant would become India’s 291st Test match player during the 2018 tour of England, making his debut during the 3rd Test at Trent Bridge. In fitting Pant fashion, he got off the mark with a six.
He scored his maiden Test match century in the same series against England during the 5th Test match at The Oval; he was the second-youngest wicket-keeper and first Indian wicket-keeper to score three figures in England.
Pant would make his ODI debut for India on 21 October 2018, firmly cementing his position in the international set-up ahead of Dinesh Karthik.
During the 2018/19 India tour of Australia, Pant took a record 11 catches in the 1st Test and became the first Indian wicket-keeper to hit a century in Australia. In September 2019 during the second Test match against the West Indies, Pant became the fastest Indian wicket-keeper to affect fifty dismissals.
India toured Australia once again in 2020/21, with Pant producing similarly stellar performances again. During the third Test, he scored 97 off just 118 in a breathless counter-attack worth 148 runs alongside Cheteshwar Pujara on day five. In the fourth Test match of India’s fateful Test match at The Gabba, Pant became the fastest Indian wicket-keeper to reach 1,000 runs with a superb match-winning 89* on day five.
Pant would also break the fastest T20 record for an Indian against Sri Lanka in March 2022, hitting his fifty in just 29 deliveries. In May 2022, he became the second-youngest Indian to captain a T20 match during South Africa’s tour of the country.
On 17 July 2022, Pant scored his maiden ODI century with a match-winning 125* (113) at Old Trafford against England.
How Good Is Rishabh Pant?
At the age of just 24, Rishabh Pant finds himself in a position where he is regarded as being one of the world’s most dangerous batters, whilst still something of a diamond in the rough for India.
There’s no doubt about his talent or status as the red ball team’s starting wicket-keeper. His records, impressive strike rate and fearlessness even alongside the lower order batters make him a nightmare for opponents to deal with. He’s even shown himself to be a handy little sledger from behind the stumps.
However, the ‘Dhoni!’ jeers that often follow his odd blunder just go to show how his predecessor’s shadow continues to threaten to loom over him.
Nevertheless, this is still a player that has been named in the ICC Men’s Test Team of the Year and captained both his domestic and national sides across multiple formats. 5 Test match centuries is no mean feat, and the fact Pant has produced his match-winning displays in his unapologetically swashbuckling manner is a testament to how much of a revolutionary player the young wicket-keeper has the potential to be.
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