Rishabh Pant’s bat flies in the air as he hits a boundary

Rishabh Pant enthralled cricket fans with his flamboyant batting on the third day of the third Test match between India and South Africa in Cape Town. Pant hit an unbeaten 100 on a test pitch as India were bowled out for 198 in the second innings, setting the hosts a target of 212 to win the match and series. India has never won a Test match in Cape Town and has never won a Test series on South African soil. If he manages to do two feats, the credit will go to the young wicket-keeper batsman.

Pant played some trademark attacking strokes during his scintillating innings, hitting 6 fours and four sixes, which included a crucial 94-run stand with skipper Virat Kohli. After Kohli was dismissed, Pant realized that he had to do heavy lifting as wickets kept falling around him. In the 60th over of India’s innings, Pant pushed Duane Olivier down the track and cracked a powerful shot through the cover area that went straight to the boundary, taking his individual score from 87 to 91.

Playing that shot, Pant lost control of his bat and it flew through his hand and landed around the square leg area.

With experienced batsmen Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane coming to bat on the third morning after two quick wickets fell, Pant took his time to leave. He showed good technique and patience to clear the opening blasts of the South African fast bowlers before playing his shots.

Pant sprinted to the boundary and ran ahead while Kohli dropped the anchor at the other end. Once Kohli got out and wickets started falling all around him, Pant knew he had to put pressure on the accelerator to get crucial runs for his team.

He did exactly that and took India’s lead past 200 runs on his way to reach his fourth century in Test cricket.

Pant hit six fours and four sixes and reached the figures of three.

The southpaw’s innings comes immediately after he was severely criticized for playing a hasty shot to get out during India’s second innings in the second Test in Johannesburg.

Before the start of the third Test, skipper Virat Kohli backed the youngster.

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Pant eventually remained unbeaten on 100 as India were bowled out for 198 in the second innings. South Africa were set a target of 212 runs to win the Test and the series.

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